How are you?
When I left the field of Juvenile Justice, I learned that I no longer said “How are you” the way other people do. Most of the time, when we say that, we’re not REALLY asking if you are doing all right, it’s a standard nothing greeting. I have had people in my life who complain that when they ask someone how they are, they actually tell them about the negative things in their life.
By The Way, I tend to spend less time talking to those people now.
I think it’s kind of sad that we are taught to respond to “How are you” with “Terrific, never better!” I was taught that in classes, seminars that the like and it always made me wince. I understand the reasoning behind it, but a socially acceptable lie is still a lie.
I don’t like it. So, when I ask “How are you,” I am asking out of wanting to know how you actually are. Has something wonderful happened lately? Great! Please share it with me! Have you been feeling out of sorts? I’m sorry you feel that way, tell me about it. Are you just this close to something finally being achieved? Wonderful, please share it with me! Have you had a rough day? That blows, I’m ready to listen.
We all say we want a better world, so maybe one way to do that is to ask people “How are you” and not expect them to be a shining beacon of Dale Carnegie positivity and triumph. Just be willing to listen when someone tells you about their life.
Much love to friends old and now and….how are you?