Wednesday, February 09, 2005

"Very Good!" - Creating "Artificial" Happiness

I used to respond "not bad" when someone asked me how I was doing. Over time I realized that this was a negative statement and I needed to change my stock answer to this oft asked question.

People told me that I needed to respond to this question with the words "Baruch Hashem" since it is a common response for religious Jews. I noticed, however, that some people even replied "Baruch Hashem" in an unhappy tone of voice thus reflecting the opposite meaning of what they were saying.

Positive words need to be complemented with a positive tone of voice. For the past few months I use the response "Very Good!" no matter how I am feeling. I say it with enthusiasm. The first few times it felt a bit forced, however over time the brain begins to relate to the words and the once artificial sounding "Very Good!" becomes an honest "Very Good!".

You can actually trick your mind into changing your mood by changing your response to this one question. Whether you say "Very Good!" or "Baruch Hashem" say it in a happy tone and you too will be happy.


At February 9, 2005 at 11:40:00 AM EST, Blogger Erica said...

There are days when I hate that question. And some times "not bad" is all I can say. Thank you though for giving me another blog topic -- much too long for a comment, but may explain why "not bad" is sometimes "pretty good". I will try to post it later today.

At February 9, 2005 at 2:45:00 PM EST, Blogger Jack's Shack said...

That is a good attitude to have.

At February 9, 2005 at 3:13:00 PM EST, Blogger AMSHINOVER said...

I usally answer "i'm alive",hey' it beats the alternative

At February 9, 2005 at 5:29:00 PM EST, Blogger AMSHINOVER said...

please see my comment on your post monday 1/24/2005 regarding traditions

At February 10, 2005 at 12:29:00 PM EST, Blogger Anshel's Wife said...

My kids' preschool teacher told me to do it with the kids. It's a great tool. Makes everyone feel good.

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