The little boy’s smile was as infectious as the flu. Squeezed in the narrow bus seat which I shared with his mother, he gave me a bright smile every time our eyes met. And his smile was as full of life as could be! In spite of my bad mood, I could not help smiling right back at him.
It was one of those days which begin on a wrong note. I had invited some guests for dinner, and also had an appointment with my dentist. To my dismay, the maid failed to turn up. Hurriedly finishing the extra work, I stepped into the kitchen to prepare dinner. But to my disappointment, I found myself short of a number of ingredients for the dishes I had planned to serve. After making a list of the things I had to get from the superstore on my way back from the dentist I started out.
The buses were all overcrowded and after a long wait in the hot sun, I was able to board one of them. So, I was not in a particularly good mood but the child’s innocent smile somehow did wonders for my spirits. On reaching my destination, I tenderly patted his cheek, “You made my day!” I told him as I got up from my seat. Not understanding what I meant, he gave me another of his lively smiles.
A smile is the most positive emotion we possess. All of us have our share of bad days, days when nothing seems to be going right. We cannot control what is happening around us but we can control our reactions to these circumstances. A smile eases many a difficult situations. They say that it takes seventeen muscles to smile and forty-three to frown. So, why waste that extra energy on a negative emotion which would do us no good. In fact, it only helps to worsen the situation. Instead of feeling blue and giving in to depression, isn’t it better to face the circumstances with a cheerful demeanour?
Reminiscing on the powers of a happy smile, I continued my day in a much better frame of mind. Getting over with the dentist, I reached the supermarket and quickly loaded my trolley with the grocery I needed. The line at the billing counter was moving at a snail’s pace, as the lady at the counter was very slow. I waited impatiently in the queue for my turn, my mind full of the undone chores I had left behind at home.
The woman behind me seemed equally restless. Shuffling on her feet, she bumped her trolley into me. Irritated, I turned around and was about to say something rude, a frown of displeasure on my face. But I bit my tongue just in time. My anger disappeared as the middle-aged woman smiled apologetically and said sorry. Strangely the smiling face of the little boy in the bus came to my mind. Almost grudgingly, I found myself smiling back at her and nodding my head as if to acknowledge her apology.
A smile is a curve which is the shortest distance between two persons. It is a language which is not spoken anywhere but still understood all over the world. It costs nothing but gives away much. A balm for a weary soul, a ray of sunshine for those who are surrounded by the dark shadows of depression, a smile is a message of cheerfulness for the gloomy. It is a magic potion which can heal many woes and soothe many troubles. Sometimes when we cannot express ourselves properly and we grope for words, a smile comes in to save the situation.
We may not have the teeth fit for a toothpaste ad, or be as good looking as all of us would love to be, but a smile is the cheapest and most readily available option which beautifies the most ordinary looks. It does to our face what the best beautician in town and the most expensive cosmetics cannot do.
According to Dale Carnegie, “A smile costs nothing but creates much. It enriches those who receive, without impoverishing those who give. It happens in a flash and the memory of it sometimes lasts forever”.
So, the next time you find yourself in a difficult situation, try to keep your smile intact. Things may work out better and the winning curve on your lips could set a lot of things straight.