It’s a simple question, right? And it’s probably the single question that we will be asked the most, over and over again throughout our lifetimes. Something we all share in common, at least in this culture. Often times for most of us the answers are pretty automatic – “”I’m fine.” “I’m good.” I’m doing well.” “I’m okay, a bit tired.” “Great, and you?” It’s as much a greeting as it is an inquiry and for the most part our answers are not in-depth, thorough or even in some cases, particularly honest. Actually, our responses often are linked pretty directly to who is doing the asking. If it is a casual acquaintance, the person behind the counter at our local coffee shop, or a co-worker we don’t know particularly well – our answer spills out with little to no thought at all, a simple – “Good, thanks.” and you keep moving along. If it is a dear old friend, a spouse, a coach or confidant – we may flesh it out a bit – fill in some details about what is good or not so good about our day. This isn’t a particular surprise to most of us – and speaks to the many governing factors that influence our response; such as social mores and boundaries.
Of course if we were to stop and really think about that question every time we heard it – we would become aware of a lot more about how we were doing then we might want to have to think about at any given moment. But if you pause for a moment and really think about it – how would you answer that question for yourself – right now and what determines what your answer would be? When you think about it the number of contributing factors can be endless; How much sleep did you get last night?, What’s on your schedule for today?, How’s that pain in your lower back doing today?, How do you feel about what you’ve accomplished so far today?, Where are you headed? What’s this time of year like for you – any anniversaries in your awareness?, Is it raining outside? and Who are you going to see? there’s a lot going on all the time that impacts how we are doing.
And while all of this “input” into our systems certainly has a big impact on how we are feeling at any given moment – the other big factor is what are we putting out. By this I mean, what are you bringing to each moment? How do you chose to let the outside impact your inside experience. How are you taking in and processing all that is impacting your life and what are you doing with it. Sure, some days you just wake-up with a little spring in your step, and a “can-do” attitude that seems to have come out of nowhere – but your perspective is a key factor. It’s the old – glass half-empty, glass half-full story and it plays itself out over and over again all day long, each and every day of our lives. I am not suggesting that you look at every bit of bad news in your life with blind optimism – but rather that you recognize your ability to impact that which impacts you. Find the control in what feels beyond your control and chose your point of action.
And while you’re at it – instead of waiting for someone else to ask you how you are doing – take a moment here and there throughout the day to ask yourself that question. If you like your answer, then good and if you don’t take a moment toreflect on what inner adjustments you can make to effect a different outcome.