Why Aren’t you ….

Beautiful smiling cute baby

smiling more.  I’m not talking about the closed mouth, slight turn of the lips smile you give the checker at the grocery store.  Or the millisecond one you offer the driver who pulls up next to you as and you grip the steering wheel, willing the light to change.

I’m talking about a full monty, teeth barring, cheek pinching, ear to ear grin. 

Really, how often do we wield that smile?  I know. . . it’s reserved for special occasions.  Weddings, birth of babies, raises, when that dress in the back of the closest fits again, or in my case, an agent wanting to see my manuscript.

Is the perfect smile like the newest hardware release where there’s a limited amount available?  Are you holding onto smiles that might change a person’s day, or at least influence a singular moment as they bask unexpectedly on your pearly whites?

Facial muscles.  That’s all that is required.  The cool thing is giving this simple gift benefits you.  A few of my favorites are:

makes you more attractive

releases stress

boosts your immune system

lowers blood pressure

helps you stay positive

My challenge to you;  grin like you just won the lotto, until your cheeks hurt.  Do this at least 5 times a day for 7 days.  Post your results and comments. 

*** My results below – do you have a story that beats mine?***

Think of all the things 35 smiles could bring.  Brightening a gloomy day, halting a tear from leaking out, giving someone a reason to try harder, making a stranger feel loved.

On a personal note: I recently attended a meeting with  a small group of writers that share their struggles and highs over a cup of coffee.  A new woman sat down next to me.  She was bubbly,  full of ideas and passion.  I left thinking… next time I’m having what she’s having!   But once I got home and sat behind the computer, what I remembered most about her was her non stop smile.  So that’s what I’m having (big ass smiles), at least for the next 7 days.   


Sadly, I didn’t make 35 smiles.  But when I purposely spread my cheeks to maximum girth, I felt an instant boost in my mood.  Even if the smiley face was directed outward, somehow it seeped inside me, all the way down to my toes.  I was visiting a grieving friend where happy thoughts were deep in the cracks and hard to find.  She played with me and we smiled, most of the time, at each other.  Then we would laugh.  It was great!  What did I learn?   That quality always trumps quantity.  Sometimes, one great big ass smile is all that is needed. 



















Why aren’t you. . .

reading something daily?

I get it.  Life is busy. With our phones, T.V., work, children and husbands there’s little ‘me’ time left.   Even if there was, would you want to spend it reading?

You should read something everyday.  And when I say something I am being very broad here.  Not just books.  I don’t know about you but I am a pro at focusing on me.  If it’s not what I’m doing, then it’s what I’m feeling. This moment, the next, last week and next Thursday.  Generally I tend to worry more about tomorrow and cringe when I replay yesterday while at the same time, muddling through today.

We need to focus outward.  The best way to move in that direction is to crack open the vast horizons and stretch our thinking caps.

So what should you read?

Cartoons.  Nothing sloughs off negativity better than a hearty laugh. If it’s at your own expense, even better.

New Recipes.  Can’t you imagine the ingredients swirling in the bowl, tempting your taste buds until you find yourself salivating.  Next thing you know you’re searching your pantry or jumping in the car headed to the grocery store. The result on this tasty exercise? Cooking is cathartic.

Meditation/prayer/general uplifting stuff.   Short of Prozac, most of us don’t wake up chipper.  Starting your day in the zone by reading something that feeds your soul improves your chances of accomplishing what you set out to do the rest of the day.  Don’t you want to end the night with a sigh of satisfaction?

The news.  I admit, I’m not a paper reader and haven’t dived into online news. I do however pick up the Art & Entertainment section of the Sunday paper.  Knowing what’s happening in the world, your community and neighborhood keeps you relevant.  It gives you things to talk about with other people, whether they’re new acquaintances, old friends or your spouse of 20 years.  And, if you are not the one bringing up new technology/international incidents/Broadway plays at least you’ll have insight and can join the conversation with a respectable point of view.

Your goals.  What, don’t have any?  You should and not just the boring financial ones. Or the unrealistic kind, like dropping 3 dress sizes by Christmas.  Well okay.  Maybe no carb eaters can achieve that but I’m focusing on your dreams.  They aren’t just for daydreaming.  Make them happen.  Come up with a plan and give them a look-see daily.

Whatever it is you’re choosing to read daily, is data in that brain of yours.  Make it work in your favor. And read on.

Stayed tuned for more Why Aren’t You. . . posts