I hope everyone is well.
Or should I say Hello – how are you?
That is a greeting and an attached question that we often use in everyday life. I think many of us feel the only appropriate answer to this question is yes, I am fine thank you, or similar words to that. It seems polite and probably satisfies the other person.
It seems to me, we often give the answer of yes, I am ok, even if we are not ok. Perhaps we do not want to burden the other person or perhaps we do not trust that the question is a genuine request. It can be hard to judge this sometimes.
Before I continue – I just want to state the obvious – it is ok, not to be ok. I say it often and I’ll say it again.
Think about being the person asking the question. You might be worried about someone or want to let the other person know its ok to talk to you about how they are feeling. There is a very simple, but powerful technique to let someone know it’s ok to talk: ask how they are, twice! This is the ‘ask them twice’ technique.
This approach can really make a difference. It can open up a conversation. I wanted to share this technique in a blog, as it is simple yet powerful. I had an anxiety attack on Monday morning. I was on the receiving end of this technique, and it was greatly appreciated. It is ok not to be ok – I wasn’t at the time.
Don’t be afraid to ask, you might make a real different. The other person might just shrug it off and say they are ok a second time. That is also fine, but you never know, one time you ask you could just save a life.
Will you ask someone twice?