I have never cared for the opening line people use when greeting me, "So, what's new with you?" I realize it's a reasonable way to begin a conversation, but I tend to feel put on the spot, as if the question is loaded with an expectancy for something out of the ordinary and requires an equally out-of-the-ordinary response.
Now, I have to admit, although my life is very pleasant most of the time, it is also quite ordinary most of the time. I haven't been away on an exotic holiday, nothing untoward has happened to me or anyone I know, and the little joys and pleasures I may experience from my every day routines and rituals -- alone or with others -- don't seem to be the fodder for opening conversations.
Of course, I could tell the person how I enjoyed playing with my kitty cat as she chased the string around the room. But, first of all, it's not new information, and second, the person, unless a tried and true cat friend, probably isn't going to be as eager to know whether Miss Kitty played with her toys today or not.
So, what to do? I believe author, speaker and life coach, Valorie Burton of Rich Minds, Rich Rewards, shared a wonderful new question in her weekly e-newsletter I received this morning. Here's an excerpt from it:
What's the best thing that happened to you today?
"This is one of my favourite questions to ask people in lieu of the overused and often insincere, "How are you?" It's a simple, thought-provoking question. Ask it of others -- and once a day, ask it of yourself.
In my seminars and workshops, I often have participants ask each other, "What's the best thing that's happened to you today (or this week or this month ...)?" Most people have to think for a moment, but the response is always one that lifts spirits and puts life in a whole new perspective."
Now, doesn't that question create more opportunity for interesting conversation? To share more heart stuff? For me, one of the best things that's happened to me today was that I enjoyed a refreshing walk in the neighbourhood, breathing in all those earthy Spring smells and listening for the bird songs of the newest arrivals. I even chatted with a chirpy sparrow when I passed the tree he was perched in.
So, what's the best thing that's happened to you today?
I love asking this! So much better and then the answer has to be upbeat! Wonderful!ReplyDelete
What's the best thing that happened to me today? I got a ton of writing done and I love it.
now I'm wondering what you had to say or ask the chirping bird on your walk...just kidding. Sounds like spring has arrived in your life and mind...ReplyDelete
The best thing that happened to me today is our client finally paid her bill from December through March and she will pay April's bill today and we'll receive it by Thursday!! I love this question!ReplyDelete
My son and I spent the day together just enjoying each others company.ReplyDelete
Hi Brenda! Thank you for stopping by and commenting at my blog today! I enjoyed reading this post. Yes, this would be a day brightener to ask others this question I think. Best thing that happened to me today--I heard from a good friend unexpectedly. It was a nice surprise. Hope you have a good week ahead. :)ReplyDelete
That is a great opening line! I love it.ReplyDelete
Thanks for sharing it!
I delighted that you linked to Everyday Epiphanies. When our children were in school, I drove them and loved the time to talk with them. Every day when I picked them up, I would ask, "What was the best part of your day today?" My son almaost always answered "lunch" or "recess". LOL. But they learned to look for the good, because they knew I would ask. Agreat exercise for all of us.ReplyDelete
This is Great! My favorite question for upteen years has always been, "So... what's the best part of your life?" It also opens up some interesting discussions. And keeps us focused on the more positive side of our lives.ReplyDelete
I agree with the "What's new?" inquiry... It leaves me going, "Uhhhh...let me think for a minute". Of course, the "best part of your life" takes a while to come up with an answer for as well. But, the answers always lead to a deeper, more involving, conversation.
Valerie Burton's question is easier to respond to. Think I'm going to give it a try.
The best part of my day today was working with a couple of my favorite clients... and the breathtaking pink hyacinths that were brightening the front yard of a home I took them through. They made me believe that SPRING may come after all.
I just wanted to follow-up with you and let you know that I did this all day yesterday!! We just returned back to school from Spring Break so I asked everyone I talked to what was the best thing that happened during their break and had wonderful and REAL conversations!!!ReplyDelete