(Yes, you can print this out for personal use, but please do not distribute without written permission.)
First of all, make sure that your words will be listened too. Double check. Are you sure you’re the right person to address this? Is this an issue to worry about? Is now the right time? If you’re as sure as you can be:
- Start in a pleasant, friendly voice. Keep it light.
- Talk somewhere quiet where you won’t be overheard.
- Don’t judge. Just point out, nicely, that you’ve noticed something, and you thought they might want to know.
- Don’t sound like the authority on the subject. You’re talking as a peer, a friend. Friends are awesome mentors and you don’t need to sound better than them to get your point across!
- Offer help and follow up, if you think it’s wanted. Not needed, wanted. You don’t want to force the issue.
- Plan what your going to say to make sure it’s the right words for now.
- Make sure it’s the right time to say it. Make sure it’s not just a quiet place, but a quiet time, and that your friend is in a good enough mood to listen.
- And finally, daven. Offer an informal prayer, or a quick kapital tehillim beforehand that it all go well. This is crucial!
If you use common sense and keep your best intentions for your friend in mind, you can’t mess it up too badly. Ask a mentor if you’re not sure. It can’t hurt to wait on it. GOOD LUCK, caring friend!