Think about the last time you talked to someone, maybe a friend, work colleague or family member, you hadn’t seen in a while. When you asked them how they have been how did they respond? How did you respond when they asked you? It usually goes something like this: “Hey there! How are you?” “Well, I’ve just been busy.” And then the conversation devolves into a checklist of everything going on in their life. You will notice that, “Busy” has come a new emotion!

Being busy has become a badge of honor. Busyness is at epidemic proportions in our society. It has changed the norm for what is acceptable. Think about it. What if you said or heard, “Well really not much going on in my life and I am feeling a bit depressed lately because I see everyone on Facebook having wonderful vacations on sunny, warm beaches.” You may immediately think, “Loser!” Are we afraid of being quiet? Or are we afraid what people may think if we are something other than, “Busy.” On the flip side, when we ask the question are we really, I mean REALLY prepared to hear how people REALLY feel? Next time you ask the question, “How are you?” take note of the response. Next time you’re asked, see if the person asking is really interested and challenge yourself to speak beyond your busyness.