It is amazing how much a simple smile can brighten the day. I love seeing it. I love doing it. It is also an instant mood changer. Recently I experienced its magical effects.
I went in to a jewelry store to have some links taken out of my watch (I like wearing men’s watches). The clerk at the counter was busy rearranging some jewelry under the case. I waited patiently for her to finish. She had briefly glanced up at me so she knew I was standing there. I stood for a moment longer and she made no further acknowledgement that I was standing there and continued to busy herself with the items under the counter. Now she was noticeably ignoring me. I began to get angry. I expected her to at least ask me if I needed any help, but that was apparently expecting to much of her so I blurted out that I needed some links removed. I was a little louder than I should have been and realized that I was allowing her actions were affecting my good mood. I calmed down as she silently took the watch from me, walked away, and quickly removed one link. I needed two links removed, but she didn’t give me a chance to tell her. Then she returned with my watch. I told her that I needed another link removed. Now she had even more of an attitude and I was getting mad again. Then I realized that I had done nothing to this woman, so whatever she was so upset about had nothing to do with me. Finally, she gave me the watch back with another link removed. I tested it out on my arm to make sure it fit. Then I smiled and said “Thank you. Have a great day”.
She then, for the first time made eye contact with me, smiled and said, “You’re Welcome”. It was as if she couldn’t believe that I was so pleasant after she was the total opposite to me. Next she asked me how the weather was outside and how she hoped that it would be nice tomorrow on her day off. She complimented me on how the men’s watch looked on me and how she had never thought to wear a men’s watch. She actually became very chatty after the “thank you”.
What I would like to challenge all of us to do is to not assume that everyone in the world is out to get us. We need to realize that it is not productive to match a bad attitude with your own bad attitude. Oftentimes, a little gratitude mixed with kindness, sincerity, and understanding can diffuse the meanest person. We can’t take ownership of other people’s problems. Someone who seems to be upset with you for no reason may be upset, but you have nothing to do with it. Don’t let it affect you. Instead try to project something good onto them. It could be a compliment or a smile. It is very hard to keep up a bad attitude in the face of a warm smile. Be thankful for the power kindness and share it it all situations.
― Maya Angelou
Congratulations, you’re alive.
If that’s not something to smile about,
then I don’t know what is.”
― Chad Sugg, Monsters Under Your Head
― Mother Teresa