November 16, 2019

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“How’s it going?” “Busy.”

I used to say “busy” a lot. With a weird mix of pride and despair. Sound familiar?

Now, I make an effort never to respond that way. I think “busy” makes people immediately feel stressed. Anyone else think it triggers this, “agh me too — panic!” thought process? Or at the very least an internal cringe?

I’ve started trying to say things like, “working on a fun, new project!” or “reading a great book on business finances – it’s more fun than it sounds!” or even just a “terrific!” if my creative juices are zapped for the day.

Those answers spark fun conversations — versus downer follow-up questions about what’s causing the “busy,” with the asker bracing themselves for your response.

Plus, I guess it reflects my belief that how we respond to that question has an impact on how our view our own days/weeks (a self-fulfilling prophecy type thing) and the asker’s mood. I mean, it’s way more fun to spread a smile than gloom, right?

I’m not saying slap a sunny face on everything, even when your chin wobbles as you fight tears. I’m just saying, instead of the rote-“busy”-with-grimace response, shake it up. Try to surprise the other person with something random and upbeat.

So, what’re your favorite, surprising way to respond? How’s it going, lady?

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  1. Liz says:

    My favorite response now days is "Productive!" or "Being productive!"…something like that. Better word than "busy" and more positive in my opinion.

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