Shortly after the arrival of Covid-19 in the UK we began wishing each other well with “Stay Safe!” comments.
It is a well-intended comment. Yet, in communication, and as we know from NLP, it’s not our intention when communicating that matters. What matters are the results of our communicating – our impact on the other person.
Until February of this year we were wishing one other: Have a Good Day. Have a Nice Day. Enjoy the Rest of Your Day (or your morning, your afternoon, your evening etc).
Most of the time these were meaningless but pleasant and conversational good wishes. They were nice ways of ending a chat or interaction.
And then along came… “STAY SAFE!”
And, yes, in the beginning, and the first few times, it felt quite good.
But after a few days, a few weeks, and then a few months the repeated wish became a reminder that daily life wasn’t about having a good day, anymore.
It was about avoiding The Danger.
It was about Not Catching It.
About Protecting ourselves from The Virus – Not getting ill.
So, yes, the intentions were good.
But those repeated reminders that we may be surrounded by danger is not good. It further adds to the Nocebo effect – to the growing belief that Covid-19 is going to find us and kill us.
“Have a Good Day!”
Yes, it may be a bit trite. It may be a meaningless comment. And, here in the UK, it’s not even a home-grown greeting.
But why don’t we bring back that lovely old “Have A Good Day!”
So that we are reminding one another that it is still absolutely possible to… yes… have a good day!
Rather than being endlessly reminded of all the dangers that daily life potentially exposes us to.