Today a woman at work asked me how I was.
Not in a "Man you look tired/sick/strange; how *are* you??" concerned kind of way but in a greeting/social-situation kind of way. Trouble was, I had my bad attitude on - not because of her and not because of the meeting we'd just arrived at - but because of a conversation that had happened before I'd got there. It was a pretty typical conversation in my work-life that never failed to put me in a poor frame-of-mind.
I kind of sighed and grunted and slouched as an answer to this perfectly friendly question.
She chuckled and said, "You know, if you had a Rose; a Thorn; and a Banana you could've answered that question."
I showed her my "please explain" eyebrows and she proceeded to tell me that in her team they had this habit of thinking about:
- One good thing (the rose)
- One challenging thing (the thorn)
- One thing they're looking forward to (the banana)
Had I been forearmed with this technique I might have answered her question with "I'm excited that Project X has finally kicked off although I'm hearing some resistance due to lack of resources, I'm really looking forward to getting the stocktake underway." Or something except who the hell ever looks forward to a stocktake?
"I'm so happy it's Winter - it's my favourite time of the year even though it's getting colder I really am looking forward to our first proper frosty morning!"
Rose; thorn; banana - a little social lubrication that potentially camouflages the truth of the situation you might not want to share because all you really want to do is sag and sigh and no one really wants to know how you really are anyway.
Tomorrow: pack away one good thing; one challenging thing; and a banana into a sentence so you're ready to be the social lubricator not the party pooper.