Everyday we greet family, friends and coworkers in pretty much the same banal way. Conversation pretty much goes like this:
“Good morning!” (Other person echoes)
“How are you?” (Fine) Despite the fact that the other person’s facing a seemingly insurmountable problem.
And we move on for another ordinary exchange.
But what if we were to exchange “Good morning” for something more engaging, something like:
“Is your morning good?”
That question would probably raise eyebrows for a few reasons:
- No one says that-period.
- It’s not what we expect. It doesn’t even sound like proper English!
But that’s what makes it so powerful. When you ask someone a derivative of the above, you’re actually opening up the channel for a truthful, meaningful conversation. You are forcing him/her to actually think for a second about what an appropriate response. That’s what conversation is all about.
Now you’re more likely to hear about the car accident her husband was in last night, or the emotional roller-coaster caused by dealing with teenage issues. We all need someone to listen to us; a voice to help guide us through the dark places in our lives. But none of us will hear that voice if we are presenting and reacting to the ordinary.
Try it tomorrow: instead of saying “good morning” to your kids, ask them: “Is your morning good?” And follow that up with “if not, what can I do to make your day as good as it can be?”
You might end up with a conversation that will make you late for work.
Have an awesome day!