Sean Plunket: The best gift you can give to others is time and understanding

Sean Plunket 12/12/2019

By Sean Plunket, Magic Afternoons host.

I had been thinking a lot about talking about this because I think back literally to just a year maybe, and a couple of weeks ago.

Where I was at, you know, it was as dark as I got in my life and literally I felt, because of the way my brain was working, and had been working in a decline that it probably taken a year and a half or two years.

It involves all the everyday challenges that people have; financial challenges, romantic challenges, work challenges, employment challenges and I just ran out of gas.

I started slipping and sliding.

I was at the bottom, I had the plan and I was good to go.

Literally down to figuring out who would take care of my dog and everything and how I would work it out.

Something changed and I'm going to share with you what changed actually because I think it is important in the context of the conversations that we have.

What changed was a job and I started believing in myself again and that job was here at Magic Talk.

I haven't even told the people who gave me that job that probably in some ways saved my life.

So you people are very important to me.

Re-engaging and feeling that I had some worth as a broadcaster and I wasn't washed up or useless and I wasn't universally hated or rejected.

That I wasn't too old, I wasn't too pale and I wasn't too stale.

It has lifted me up and I'll look at myself now a year on after what has still been an incredibly difficult personal year.

I suppose in a mental sense on a journey towards some greater sense of well-being. Man, I've learnt some stuff in the last two and a half years and in the last year.

I've learnt how to take care of myself better in a mental sense.

I haven't sought a whole lot, or had available to me, a whole lot of counselling. I haven't taken any drugs, I haven't been to see a mental health professional, I had just decided that I was either going to live or I was going to die.

So when I hear people who are reaching out to others and trying to help them, and I had a family that really helped me, some very close friends who really helped me, some people without even knowing it just by treating me as normal, allowing me to re-engage in society helped me.

I just feel for people and I particularly feel for people who I know might be heading into what is meant to be the happy time of the year nowhere near happy.

I ask you to be as compassionate to them, as patient with them as possible because they need you.

I've lost a couple of people I know, a couple of them very close to me, this year to suicide.

I didn't see it coming, I didn't maybe listen hard enough or look hard enough.

I have been wondering for the last month or so whether or not I should share that with you people at any time.

I didn't plan to do this today but it came up and I was thinking about Dee and how frustrated I feel at that so I just want to share that with you.

I want to say to you that the best thing you can give anyone for a present is time and understanding.

You don't need to wrap that up in a bow and put it under a Christmas tree, just being there for them and just listening and telling them they are part of the world and someone cares about them.

It is a very, very valuable gift that only human beings and caring human beings can give each other.

Where to find help and support

Sean Plunket is host of Magic Afternoons, weekdays noon to 3pm.