You probably hear it almost every day, and for folks that are pretty social, maybe many times during the day…
”How you doing?”
Most often, a “fine” or “great” satisfies, and the conversation moves on. Sometimes we might give a little more detail about some aches or a personal situation, but those are rare and usually superficial.
So how are we really doing? The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index can give us a snapshot or a trend line of the pulse of the nation or a subset, but how about on an individual basis? How often do we take the time to truly take stock of our own well-being?
While we generally have a good sense of our physical health, at least when symptoms are present, how conscious are we of our emotional and social health, areas that are core to our well-being?
Emotional health touches on areas most of us don’t often or ever consider: our self-awareness, taking time to be more mindful, being in touch with our feelings and sensing how they can guide or impact our behaviors. With our daily lives moving at a pace where it’s hard to keep up, it takes some effort to really pay attention and listen to the “beneath the surface” components that can be suppressed by our transactional days.
And in our interactions with others, whether colleagues, friends or family, the dimension of social health comes into play in how we choose to interface on an individual or group basis. What do you bring into each of these relationships, in those moments of interaction you share? How we initiate, communicate, respond and choose to agree and support or disagree and oppose help make up our social health. With whom we opt to invest our time and energy in relationships helps guide our well-being in positive or negative ways.
As a leader in well-being, we need to do more to promote our insights and ideas around social and emotional health, to provide deeper and more meaningful context about these elements of well-being so there can be greater understanding and appreciation of these areas.
As individuals, we can give ourselves a gift by making efforts to better know our own well-being, to make time to build better self-awareness, both for our own reflection and in interrelating with others.
So think about this, the next time someone says to you, “How you doing?”