Before an orchestra plays all the musicians check their tuning together. Something similar happens when we meet someone. We don’t usually dive into the big thing that we want to tell them or do with them, but rather begin with an introduction, usually including “How are you?”. We can reply with a standard and opaque “Fine, thank you. And you?” or we can actually let the other know how we are today. It’s an opportunity for our tones to come closer thanks to empathy. No need to slash our hearts open, but acknowledging our mood or the fact that something is keeping our mind busy can prevent these things from sabotaging the connection. I also find it a relief not to have to pretend that I’m different to how I actually am.