How Are You?

A question, phrase that is asked countless times a day without much thought or true concern. It more or less has morphed into a rhetorical remark that unconsciously slips off the tongue in an exchange. Often times when I realize I’ve said to  someone, “How are you,” I feel bad for being so disconnected to how they truly might be feeling and my common, sad attempt at coming off as a concerned person.

Last night, while perusing my usual social media and news sites, I stumbled upon this article on Huffington Post’s “The Blog” page. After you read it you will completely revamp the way you ask questions and completely throw out the phrase, “How are you”? from your vocabulary.

If you’ve only allotted yourself a few extra minutes to read this blog post on the GOTR site, then I will save you the trouble of having to read the other, but it essentially encourages us to stop with the “throwaway questions” and instead ask questions that are intimate and meaningful when talking to people we care about, such as:

When did you feel loved today?

When did you feel lonely?

What did I do today that made you feel appreciated?

What did I say that made you feel unnoticed?

What can I do to help you right now?

I know, a few of those feel weird to even think about, let alone verbal say to another human being. But, if you let them solidify themselves for a while those phrases will begin to sound quite beautiful and genuinely considerate.

When your kids get home from school instead of asking them the age old questions, “What did you learn today,” or simply, “How was school,” you can hit them with:

How did you feel during your spelling test?

What did you say to the new girl when you all went out to recess?

Did you feel lonely at all today?

Were there any times you felt proud of yourself today?

I bet your kid(s) will cock their head to the side, pause and think for a moment, and then give you the best response you’ve ever heard.

In our curriculum this season, we will be discussing positive self-talk with the girls and the tips above are a great preparation for their lessons to come. Who knows, it could  make free expression in your own households that much better, as well as how we all (including the kids) socialize and fellowship with one another.

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