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Can I tell you about a pretty bad habit of mine? Hear me out: you may or may not do this same exact thing as well.
Do your conversations typically go like this when you’re out at a networking event or catching up with old friends?
“How are you?”
“I’ve been busy, but good!”
Busy. BUSY. Y’all, if I had a penny for every time someone in D.C. said they were “busy,” myself included, I would own a penthouse in Logan Circle by now. I’m starting to honestly kick myself every time I state that I’m “busy.” No duh. We’re all type A, go-getters in the District: most of us have full-time jobs, side hustles, social lives, and we try to squeeze some dates in here and there. We’re all maniacs, yes, we have established this.
It doesn’t make for great conversation, IMO. Whenever I say I’m busy, a vision of my “to-do” list pops in my head, and I immediately overwhelm myself. Then I low key start complaining about how stressed out I am. This is not a fun convo to have at happy hour, trust me. No one cares. The person that you’re talking to probably has a million other things going on as well.
There’s a time and place to vent about how “busy” you are, but I’m making a little resolution to myself: I’m trying to never say “I’m busy” at a networking event ever again. But what else do you say when someone asks how you are? I have some ideas:
What to Say In Place Of “I’m Busy”
“I’ve got a lot of cool projects coming up.”
“Business is booming, and I can’t complain!”
“I’m working on a big project now, but I cannot wait until it’s wrapped up so I can Netflix in peace!”
“I think it’s about time for a vacation — do you have any recommendations?”
(for when you’re extra stressed)
What do you guys think? Do you have any suggestions on what to say other than you’re “busy” while networking with people?