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Monday, July 01, 2013

“A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.” - Phyllis Diller

I first became aware of the power of a smile when I was about eight years old. I’d decided to go to a friend’s house because things were unhappy that day at my house where my parents were arguing. I must have looked rather woebegone, because, as I met an elderly man walking towards me from the other direction-- he smiled at me. It was such a warm smile that I couldn’t help but smile back. He didn’t say a word as we passed one another, he just smiled. That changed my whole day, and I suddenly felt good—happy again. For some reason that memory has always stayed with me; I’m sixty years old now and I still remember it clearly. Because of that man smiling at me I’ve always smiled at children-- especially those who look like they need a smile.

“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” ~Thích Nhất Hạnh

When I was in college I had a part-time job as a telephone solicitor setting appointments for photographic portraits. At my desk there was a mirror. We were instructed to use the mirror to smile at ourselves as we talked to people because the smile would make us happier, which would come through in our voices, making what we were saying more amenable to those on the other end of the line. That’s when I learned there was more than just a visual affect to smiling.

“The world always looks brighter from behind a smile.” ~Author Unknown

Years later I was in the hospital for two months after brain surgery. I got through surgical recovery and physical rehab by smiling. It made me feel better, encouraged the other patients, and made me a favorite with all the doctors, nurses and therapists who assisted in my recovery. There are notes in my medical records about what a good attitude I had. That attitude was based on the idea that I just needed to keep smiling, no matter how much pain I was experiencing, or how frightened I was, or how exhausted I got from hours and hours of physical therapy.

“When you’re smiling, when you’re smiling, the whole world smiles with you.” –Lyrics by Rufus Wainwright

Smiles are infectious. It’s hard to resist a good smile. We encourage each other here on SparkPeople with virtual smiles. We read one another’s blogs and thank each other for sharing something funny that gave us a smile. Those smiles make us feel good and are often just what we needed at that moment to make our day go better. We brighten everyone’s day, including our own, when we share a smile.

“The smile that flickers on baby’s lips when he sleeps- does anybody know where it was borne? Yes, there is a rumor that a young pale beam of a crescent moon touched the edge of a vanishing autumn cloud, and there the smile was first born…..” --Rabindranath Tagore

We always celebrate our baby’s smiles. A baby’s smile is impossible to resist. In my family we have two new smilers who arrived earlier this year. They possess two of my favorite smiles.

My grandson Asher

My great-niece Reina

“Smile, its free therapy.” -Douglas Horton

Smiles are –
emoticon Free.
emoticon Joyful.
emoticon Easy to share.
emoticon Invigorating.
emoticon Contagious.
emoticon Able to lower blood pressure.
emoticon Stress relievers.
emoticon Mood boosters.
emoticon Encouraging.
emoticon Validating.
emoticon Natural pain killers.
emoticon Attractive.
emoticon Healing.
emoticon Good for relationships.
emoticon So much a part of being human.

“Smiling is my favorite exercise.” ~Author Unknown

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