There are certain phrases that we all say and really don’t mean. “How are you?” is probably the one that is most frequently used without real feeling involved. It’s not that we are mean or empty – it’s just become part of our culture to start off a conversation this way.

How are you?

I’m fine and you?

Been there – done that… a ga-zillion times. Yesterday afternoon, someone asked me how I was and ACTUALLY meant it. I saw it in her eyes and heard it in the inflection of her voice. And it startled me. I paused for just a moment – not long enough for her to really notice, and I actually thought about answering honestly.

How am I?

But I watched her for just a moment longer and decided that I really didn’t want to tell her how I was. So I said what I always say.

I’m fine and you?

I wonder what would have happened if I did a major brain dump on her at that moment. How am I? Well, let me start at the beginning.

But that’s not how we play this game, right? That’s not how we act among acquaintances and new friends. We smile. We hide. We act as if.

How are you? I’m fine.

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What do you think about how loosely we throw around “how are you”? Do you ever notice that you say it but don’t mean it? Imagine if everyone REALLY answered truthfully!? Wonder if we would say it as much? LOL

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