An interior blog entry, this may not be. But inspirational? Possibly.
On three separate occasions over the past four days, I have had the phrase ‘It’s so nice to see such a smiling face’ directed at me. When did society stop smiling?
I haven’t exactly done in-depth research about this. It’s entirely based on observation – but it seems to me that we have forgotten what makes us smile. You might just think I am a walking cliche. I smile at strangers I pass in the street. I smile extra amounts at people who look extra grumpy. I smile when I see a beautiful sky or when I overhear a child say something incredibly but simply funny. I smile when I replay thoughts in my head. And I smile even when I am covering up a deeper sadness.
Just over three years ago, I moved away from home for the first time to University. And the impression I made? Well… I wore floral clothes, multi-coloured tights and skipped down the corridor. On the outside, I seemed so happy, always grinning and was able to easily find joy in something. Inside, it was one of the scariest things I did. Was I always happy? Definitely not. Actually, for the majority of those three years I was very unhappy. But what I realised is that there is always something to smile about. Even when life throws bad things your way – no matter what it is – there will be some glimmer of happiness that finds it’s way through you, making the muscles on your face contort into that weird expression called, a smile.
So why are so many people unable to do this? When you flash your pearly whites at a stranger and they don’t return the sentiment, is it because they are unable to? Or because they don’t like the look of you, or they think you’re a little weird for being so friendly to someone you don’t know? Are any of these even reasons not to smile? Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that everyone should smile at every person they ever meet – sometimes it’s just not the right situation or the appropriate moment. But I smile when I am inspired. And I think that the inability to smile at people sometimes indicates an inability to be inspired by those people.
The things that inspire me are also the things that make me smile. And people are a huge part of that.
How about next time you’re out and about on your own – take a note of the things that prompt you to flash a grin. And see if those things leave a lasting impression on your mind…
If the world keeps on smiling, it will keep inspiration alive and the creative juices flowing. As a result, there will be much more to smile about.
It might not be a proven hypothesis, but it’s my philosophy. After all, The World Always Looks Brighter From Behind A Smile….
2 thoughts on “when did NOT smiling become the norm?”
Smiling is wonderful, and I don’t think that I do enough of it myself. However, I do smile and say hello to strangers. I smile when I see the sun, trees, a beautiful landscape, overhear an amusing conversation, watch cartoons, or think of something funny. Sometimes people look at me like I’m an alien because of it. You’re right, there IS always something to smile about.
I’m glad you agree.. and that I’m not the only one smiling at nature! Maybe it’s more common than we think? And perhaps others are afraid to show it..
We’ve definitely got it right though – if we keep on smiling, soon it will spread! They’re contagious! And have so many health benefits… who could resist??