How Are You REALLY Doing?: Checking In With Yourself
I would imagine one of the most-asked questions in a person’s life is some variant of “How’re you doing?” or “How’s it going?”
And how do we usually respond? All together now: “Good!”
That “good” could be a pat, polite answer, or could be the truth, but either way, it’s not very descriptive, and it usually stops the flow of conversation.
In our many weekly groups here at Roubicek & Thacker, we have all participants go around at the beginning and do what we call a “check in”. They all start with each person answering questions of three aspects of themselves:
How are you doing physically?
How are you doing emotionally?
How are you doing spiritually? *
If you notice, it starts with your body, and gets progressively more specific about different aspects of your being. When someone checks in, they usually give a one-word answer, and don’t feel pressure to explain their answer to the group. Simply learning to be with their physical sensations, emotions, or spiritual connection is a part of the healing process.
What we don’t realize often is each of these aspects can be functioning at different levels from each other, and when we quickly say “Good!”, we might only be answering for one of these aspects of our lives – and we’re pretty complicated! This check-in process is to help each person become more attuned with themselves, especially those hurt by trauma, addictions, or those who weren’t necessarily taught to identify their feelings.
I usually suggest to my clients they try to do this, however often it feels comfortable to them. For some, it’s daily, for some it’s a few times every hour. This helps us become aware of how we’re actually doing, if someone were to ask us “Hey, how are you?”, and we were to honestly answer them.
I’d encourage you to find a time in your day to check in with these different aspects of yourself. Remember, we can’t share with others what we don’t know about ourselves!
* We know not everyone classifies themselves as ‘spiritual’, so we clarify by saying spirituality is having a felt sense of connection with something/someone outside of yourself. This could truly be anyone: a friend, a partner, God, your children, etc. We’re essentially asking “How connected do you sense/feel a connection with those outside of yourself?” This helps us identify whether or not we feel supported in the world.