Last night as I was driving from work to get the kids I started thinking about what we would do when we got home. After a long week, I wanted us to all spend time together, but selfishly I also wanted to relax. I knew they would be tired too and it was possible they would want to do their own thing. It reminded me of when they were babies I was so excited to see them I’d practically run out of work. When I finally made it to the daycare their face would light up. They were as happy to see me as I was to see them. I remember the feeling vividly.
How you greet someone sets the tone for everything that comes next. Feelings are contagious. Greet someone with joy and excitement and they’ll likely rise to meet your excitement. On the other hand, if you are quiet or tired the other person will instantly ask “What’s wrong?”. They’ll automatically abandon the feelings they were having to meet you at your level. Hello is such a simple word but depending on our inflection, volume and tone, it can take on so much more.
How we greet each other can have a big impact on our relationships. Our current feelings (aka energy) directly impact the other person. Often we allow these feelings to be driven by instinct. If you are trying to make a good impression with a boss, teacher or new friend, you automatically rise to the occasion with a positive and enthusiastic greeting. In relationships where you are more comfortable (spouse, parent, old friend), our instinct may default to letting our tiredness show through. Our greetings in these situations are unfiltered and often a reflection of our exact emotion in that moment (which is not always a good thing).
What would happen if we paid more attention to the way we said “Hello”?
Journal on this: Think about the different ways you greet people throughout the day - how does your greeting change? How do others greet you? How do those greetings make you feel? Is there a relationship (romantic, friend, family, work, etc.) that would benefit if you changed up your greeting?
p.s. How does your energy impact your everyday relationships? In our next Journal 2 Joy workshop, “Relationships: It’s all about YOU!”, we’ll dig deeper into this very topic! I hope you’ll join us Sunday, February 28th as we talk about the role we play in ALL our relationships, not just romantic relationships, but family, work and friendships too. R.S.V.P. today, visit http://www.balancedheartcoaching.com/journal-2-joy.html for all the details.
I started writing this blog because I wanted to have deeper conversations beyond "How are you?", "Busy", with other parents. Over the years I've shared personal stories, articles, authors and topics to facilitate conversations with parents about the joys and the challenges of parenting.