Do your words make you feel great, sad, or in between?

I was at a networking event tonight, and the topic of how we answer questions came into discussion. I opined that we often chose to answer questions – like, “How are you?” without thinking. Some say – Good. Others have their pet sayings.

Many years ago, I responded to the general greeting of, “How are you?” with the response, “Somewhat reasonable!” I was not trying to be flippant; I wanted to be different, unusual. I wanted someone to remember it was not a typical response to that question.

However, years have passed, and I have studied interpersonal relationships and know that words and actions have meanings. That first impression might extend long beyond what you might believe.
My first mentor used to say, “Excellent, as always!” when asked how he was. I liked that response. It took me about thirty days before I was responding without thinking first. After that, it came naturally with the right inflection and timing. I would always leave a half-second or more in between excellent and as to give emphasis.

I am an exceptionally positive person. I am rarely sick or down. It might happen once or twice a year – sometimes not that often. On those one or two days a year that I am not quite up to par, a person asked me how I am, and I respond with my usual, “Excellent, as always!” I can feel, physically feel, a shift in my body, my whole body.

I feel better for having responded. I thought it was weird the first time it happened. But, the next time I was under the weather, my response had the same effect – a significant shift in the positive and healthy direction.

From a health perspective, we are what we eat. Nutrition in and health abounds. Are we not defined similarly by what we say?

I left the networking conversation with another thought for them to process – the answer to the question, “How’s business?” So many people stop and do not answer that question with enthusiasm. Instead, the words good, OK, could be better, and more are typical answers.

I suggest you answer that question truthfully with a single word – unbelievable. The term can imply unbelievably good or unbelievably bad. I have never had anyone come back and ask me to explain it.

But, like my response, “Excellent, as always!” needs no further questioning; the business answer of “Unbelievable!” can also impart your enthusiasm to declaring your business being good or the opposite.

Live Longer & Enjoy Life! – Red O’Laughlin –


One Response

  1. Red – You can combine the two and be “Unbelievably Excellent, as always!!” I’ve been meaning to ‘steal’ this from you for a long time, Given the obvious therapeutic value, I’m focusing on implementing both responses. Sticky notes now on desk, on bathroom mirror, and in the car. Call me on it when I miss using either. Thanks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *