This is an overly used and often disregarded question. Do we really care how another is feeling or are we just being nice? Do we even listen to the response in a compassionate way that indicates to the other that they truly matter?
If we are honestly concerned with how another feels, it will be a good practice to listen and ask additional questions. One effective way is to add to the initial question, asking: “How do you feel today?” or “How has your day been so far?” What this does is brings us to the present and invites further information to be provided.
When given additional data, we can then expand the conversation to create true, authentic connection and show that we are interested in the person’s well-being. It’s a nice feeling when people show this amount of care for us; why not give it back or start the giving?
What do we say when asked this question? “Fine,” “I’m okay,” or “Great!” are common replies. Is this a form of avoidance or a nicety? Let’s say it’s about avoiding. We may not want to hang out our laundry for everybody, yet do we regularly withhold to folks that can actually help us get through life’s challenges?
If it’s just being nice, what the bleep is that about? In essence, we are then only expanding an inauthentic experience for ourselves and those that we come into contact with. It may be time to put a stop to that nonsense.
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