The 10 Best Ways To Respond To "How Is It Going"

I know some of you ruefully laughed when you saw the title of this one. I don"t think anyone is horribly bitter about it, but the common, occasionally awkward, exchange of, "How"s it going?" - "Good. How are you?" - "Good" is a special pet peeve of many people. Some of us have sầu devoted a little too much mental energy khổng lồ questions like, "Why does everyone ask you how you are if they don"t really want khổng lồ know?", or "What"s the point in asking someone what"s new if they always just say "nothing much"?"

So with that in mind, I"m going to lớn write an entire article about the topic, because I really vì chưng have sầu enough to lớn say that I can vày that.

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The purposes of asking "How"s it going?", "What"s new?", etc.

As you probably already know, these phrases have two uses: As a standard greeting. The whole, How are you? - Good. You? - Good exchange is just another way of saying hiAs a generic way to lớn start a conversation, usually when we haven"t talked to someone in a bit

Both uses have their qualities that people find a tad annoying. There"s also the rich, confusing ground that pops up when we aren"t sure how the other person is using the terms - Are they saying, "What"s new?" because they want lớn chat, or are they just saying hello?

Using "What"s up?" as a greeting

Asking how someone is và the reply of, "Good. How are you?" has become a kind of ritualized greeting. It"s a longer, more detailed way of saying hello. Not only are you saying hi, but you"re also being a little more friendly & asking how they are. In one sense the words are rote and empty, but in another way you"re still showing you an interest in the other person.

Another way I always thought of it is, if you see a co-worker coming down the hall, simply saying "hey" doesn"t take up enough time. You"d greet them when they were fifteen feet away or so, then be left with a silence while you finished passing each other. The What"s Up? Good exchange fills that dead air.

The right response in these situations is khổng lồ just be friendly và go through the routine. Over thinking it will drive you mad. It doesn"t really matter that everyone says they"re "fine", even if they may not be. It"s okay that people technically ask each other how they are, even though that"s not what they really mean. It"s just part of how it works.

"What"s going on?" as a conversation starter

If you"re visiting your parents and my dad asks you what"s new, he obviously actually wants to lớn know how you"re doing and if anything really is new with you. It"s about the most basic, all-purpose way to kiông chồng off a conversation there is. Hopefully the answer will provide enough material khổng lồ start the real discussion. It"s unoriginal enough that we can get tired of hearing it, but it works okay.

As you can probably guess, the best response if you"re asked "What"s up?" in this way is to lớn give sầu some kind of answer that will give sầu them something khổng lồ work with và get a conversation going. You could say how you actually are, but in a fleshed out way, or you could quickly say you"re doing okay & then ask them some sort of question which will also hopefully let the true conversation begin (e.g., "I"m good. How was your vacation khổng lồ South Africa?")

It can be hard lớn think of what lớn say right away. That"s one main reason these phrases often lead to little awkward moments. People will often initially respond lớn, "How are you?" with something lượt thích , "I"m good... I"m good... yeah, things are okay..." to lớn buy themselves time lớn come up with a better response. I think everyone feels a little caught off guard và on the spot to come up with a fascinating answer sometimes. Nothing unusual at all about taking a few seconds to lớn gather your thoughts.

Don"t worry if you don"t always have a great answer to the literal "How are you?" question. Often we"re really not up to much or not a lot is new. The point is to get someone talking, và as long as that happens then everything is fine. Plus if someone really does want lớn know what"s new in your life, saying "Not much" và then changing the topic technically did answer the question.


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The confusing middle ground

I think what drives people mental over "How are you doing?" is that there are lots of cases where they"re not sure how the other person means it. Here"s a sample of the questions and concerns that can rush through your head when you"re hit with a "What"s up?":"Are they saying "How are you doing?" to say hello or because they actually want to talk?...""If they just wanted lớn say hi, then I don"t want khổng lồ try lớn start a conversation...""But if they bởi vì want khổng lồ chat, then I don"t want lớn just go "fine" & walk away...""If they bởi want to lớn talk, bởi vì they truly want to hear how I am, or do they not particularly care và were just using that line to lớn initiate the conversation?"

I"m sure you"ve sầu had those moments where you vì the standard How are you? - Good exchange with a colleague, then you both awkwardly hesitate for a beat because you"re not sure whether you should say more or not.

Another thing that happens fairly often is someone will say, "How"s it going?", hoping to lớn start a conversation. The other person will say, "Good. How are you?", but not because they"re doing the greeting version, but because they can"t think of anything lớn say. The first person will then respond, "I"m good too...." Then there will be this confused moment hanging in the air before the conversation peters out. By the halfway point of the baông chồng and forth neither side knew whether they were playing out a Greeting or a Conversation Starter, & once the exchange was over they were paralyzed and not sure how to lớn go forward.

This can all leave you baffled. Thankfully getting your wires crossed with someone doesn"t really hurt you. So you passed a classmate on campus and they wanted lớn talk, và you just greeted them and went on? No big deal, you still said hello. It"s not lượt thích you humiliated yourself or anything. If the same thing happened to lớn you, you"d understand. Or they wanted to lớn talk and you couldn"t come up with a response và fell inlớn an accidental greeting? Just take a second to think of something to say và re-initiate the conversation. Overall, don"t over-analyze things or worry about it too much. It gets easier khổng lồ handle these situations when you realize it"s fine if you sometimes get them wrong.

Other reasons some people may be put off by "How"s it going?"

There are a few reasons more socially awkward people may cringe at the thought of getting asked "What"s going on?", when it"s used as a conversation starter:

They feel like they have sầu to give sầu an interesting response, even though they often don"t have sầu one

They may think that if someone asks them what"s new, that they to lớn have sầu a captivating answer every time. Also, if someone doesn"t have much of a social life, they may really not have much going on, & worry they"ll look boring và dorky for hardly ever having a good response. As I just said, the point is lớn say hello or kick off a conversation and the actual answer to lớn the "What"s going on?" starter question only sometimes matters.

Another funny thing is that if given enough time, almost everyone"s usual answer lớn, "What"s new?" becomes boring after a while. So don"t get too worried if you always feel lượt thích you"re giving the same old reply. When you"ve known someone long enough, whatever they typically say becomes the equivalent khổng lồ "Not much...", no matter how exciting or impressive sầu their lives may have seemed khổng lồ you at first. The traveler visited yet another country. The outdoorsy friend went camping again. The artsy person put on another play or had another exhibition. The tiệc nhỏ animal had another rowdy weekkết thúc of drinking. Of course, if you vị feel bad for not having a life, you should still try to lớn fix it. But not having a sparkling come baông xã khổng lồ "What"s new?" shouldn"t the main thing you thảm bại sleep over.

They feel like people are grilling them

Some socially inexperienced people are defensive and secretive, because they want to hide parts of their lives, such as not having a ton of friends. When people ask them how they are, the insecure, mildly suspicious part of them feels lượt thích they"re being interrogated. They may even think people are asking them "What"s up?" in a mocking way, so they can chuckle over their pathetic answer. They may leave sầu everyone feeling a bit puzzled when they always seem khổng lồ clam up whenever someone asks them how they are.

When people ask how you are, you can sometimes just say, "Nothing new really" and change the topic. However, you can"t swing too far the other way và never reveal any personal information about yourself. Sometimes they bởi want khổng lồ know, and not giving them anything will make them wonder. You can at giới thiệu some more superficial details.

Disliking "What"s up?" because of the awkwardness it can be associated with

There"s no doubt "How are you?" can be at the center of some forced, uncomfortable interactions, especially when you don"t feel lượt thích you have your social act together on the whole. You can come to dislượt thích the phrases because of the situations they get linked to. One example is when you see someone around all the time, but for whatever reason you always struggle lớn make conversation with them. This happens a lot with co-workers or acquaintances you don"t have sầu a ton in comtháng with. In these cases you always seem lớn go through the whole greeting thing and it always feels really perfunctory và awkward. You know you should be saying more lớn them, but the words escape you. Every "How are you? Good, you?" just twists the knife. The "What"s new?" is a more a symptom of the problem, not the cause. How lớn fix the underlying issue of being able to lớn think of something else to lớn say is for another article.