Its time to stop asking “How Are You” and have a real conversation, as Dan Rockwell points out that it is time to stop using condescending or out of touch questions such as:
- How are you?
- How are you doing?
- How are you feeling?
No one has good answers to these questions and any response you get will be superficial. If you want to connect and have a deeper conversation consider these questions next time:
- Tell me what challenges are you facing
- What are working on that is taking most of your time right now
- Is there something that you are really looking forward to at the moment
- What is top of the agenda for you today
- Is there anything that I can do to help you right now
As Ashley Fetters wrote for The Atlantic ““How are you?” is a mere pleasantry and not an honest inquiry in search of an honest answer. To ask “How are you?” is either to make the conversation very gloomy, very fast or to force someone to lie straight to your face and say they’re fine. We need better questions to ask.”
When you ask the question you need to be asking the question and showing that you are actively listening and deeply interested in the answer. Observe the person before you ask the questions, consider the last conversation you had with this person and make sure that if feels authentic for both of you. Then you will start asking better questions.
If you are looking for inspiration Daphne Fecheyr wrote 50 questions to ask someone instead of “how are you” https://medium.com/the-ascent/50-questions-to-ask-someone-instead-of-how-are-you-9cddc96ccb86
Synopsis of an article from Leadership Freak by Dan Rockwell Published 20th August 2020 https://leadershipfreak.blog/2020/08/20/how-to-stop-asking-how-are-you-and-create-real-conversation/ and Synopsis of an article from The Atlantic by Ashley Fetters Published 24th April 2020 https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2020/04/should-i-still-say-how-are-you-during-a-pandemic/610639/