How To Avoid Questions You Don’t Want To Answer

Sunday was the day I dreaded this last week.  (It was also the day I looked most forward to.)  I knew that I was going to be put in the awkward position of having to answer questions for which I don’t really have an answer.  This is because I was around a lot of people who care a lot about me, and they have interest in my life.  Sure enough, right off the bat, someone says, “So, what are you doing now?”  Sigh.  There it was.  I hated that question in high school, and still hate it for the same reason:  I. Have. No. Idea.  Luckily, my reply, “I don’t really want to talk about it.  Am I allowed to say that?” was well-received.

A couple of years ago I took this training about how we think.  It was taught by Dr. Derek Cabrera, a teacher at Cornell.  I remember him making a comment about how Americans often ask, “So, what do you do?”  We let that identify us–and make us who we are, rather than really allowing people to know the REAL us.  Well, I don’t really do much (by American standards), so I have come up with a solution:

The next time someone says, “Hey, Jania!  What are you up to right now?”  I am going to reply as honestly as I can, without guilt“Oh, well, right now I am learning to knit.”  Or  “I am really interested in making artisan breads.”  Why should I feel like someone has punched me in the stomach when they ask me about my life?  I am LIVING!  That’s what I am doing!

Other possible replies I might use:

  • I’m learning how to talk to a two-year old.
  • I’m singing songs to my Mamaw.
  • I’m organizing my Mom’s house.
  • I’m getting rid of things that clutter my life.
  • I’m checking travel sites daily.
  • I’m considering my next move.
  • I’m forming lasting relationships.
  • I’m spending time getting healthy.
  • I’m learning to let go.
  • I’m waking up early.
  • I’m going to bed late.
  • I’m reading and praying a lot.
  • I’m planning the next few months.
  • I’m listening to music.
  • I’m slobbering on harmonicas.
  • I’m looking for contentment.
  • I’m blogging…

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