How are you today? How was your day?
How often do you hear these questions?
How often are you tempted to answer with a quick ‘fine’ hoping that the person who asked won’t ask any more. Or you answer that it was good even though it wasn’t?
Could we put a bit more effort in answering this simple yet important question? Could we start answering how our day really was or do we treat this question only as part of small talk and we won’t bother elaborating the answers?
Would treating this one of the most popular question (my guess only) more seriously could actually change something in the way we interact with each other. And finally, what does it actually mean to have a good day?
Lots of questions. Seems that this simple question poses more (complicated) questions than give the answers.
Our lives are busy, we live under a tension, everybody has their own problems and sometimes we just prefer to cut off the conversation before it even begins. I know. But I’m a strong believer in a thoughtful life – not one in which you go mindlessly through the day, just to tick off the boxes and you’re happy that you survive but one in which things have meaning and purpose. That’s why the case of this question ‘bothers’ me so much.
Every afternoon, when my husband comes home from work we ask each other that simple question. And yes, there are days when we say just ‘fine’ but usually we try to elaborate the answer to give each other a valuable feedback on how our day really was and possibly give each other a chance to support the other half in a meaningful way.
What if we all do that in our everyday conversations? Be it with a colleague, receptionist at the gym or a person on a till at the supermarket?
Instead of snapping at somebody to get rid of them why don’t we at least say: it was good or it wasn’t the greatest. Adding a few more details may even make our interlocutor feel a bit more appreciated. It doesn’t mean we have to tell them the details of our private life but at least we open space for a conversation, interaction with the other person and make a possibility of seeing a smile on somebody’s (or even our own) face. Hint to those who ask the question – ask it like you really mean it, not just to be polite.
When somebody asks me this question it also makes me think what does it actually mean to have a good day. Should I always say that the day was good, to appreciate every – good or bad, experience of my life? Or should I have certain criteria to decide whether the day qualifies as good or as not so good.
Is it a day that passed without any problems (aka ‘normal day’)?
Or on the opposite, is it a day full of surprises (providing they’re nice surprises and not bad ones)?
Is it a day that had gone according to your plan?
Or the one when your plan was thrown out of the window?
Is it a day when you did only the things you like?
Or when you had learnt something new?
Is it a day when you met your friends?
Or the day you avoided people at all?
Is it a day when you ticked another thing of your to-do list?
Or the one when you ditched all the to-do lists?
Or is it a combination of all of them?
I could continue asking those questions for long. There are probably as many answers as people (or even more, because depending on the season of life we’re in, the answers may vary) and we wouldn’t be able to come up with a definition of ‘a good day’. But it’s good to answer this question for yourself. What makes you to tick? What adds value to your life? So whenever we’re asked the question, we can answer it with a full heart, and not in a way to cut off the conversation and avoid any further questions.
How do you usually respond when asked the question “How is your day?” Are you annoyed when somebody asks you this question?
What does make you to say the day was good or bad?
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