I have a thing about the question “How are you?”
I have seen lots of discussion regarding the way that most people just respond, “Fine!” or something similar because the question itself has become a way of greeting another person.
I admit to using it to the level of overkill myself, like when I pass someone I know in the store:
“Hey! How are ya?”
Or when I hug somebody upon meeting them for lunch:
“So great to see you! How are you?”
You get the idea.
Here’s the thing. If I ask somebody how they are and then they launch into a true explanation of how they are, I LISTEN and then interact accordingly. Not everyone does the same. In fact, I can count a few times over the past two weeks when someone has asked me how I’m doing and when I start to answer them, they either interrupt immediately as if they haven’t even asked me a question or they make whatever I’m saying about them.
My opinion is, if you don’t have time to connect with someone, don’t ask open-ended questions.
Are you noticing this? Have we just gotten so used to the shortcuts that technology affords us that making eye contact and really finding out what’s going on with people we care about takes too much time and effort?
Or is it just me?