Today the sun is shining again and it feels like I've got a head start on choosing good feeling thoughts! I have been thinking more about smiling and in particular the visual effects of smiling, it seems to me that when somebody smiles it is as if the sun himself is shining from their face!
Smiles are a powerful tool, we can spread joy with our smiles. There is a game I like to play when I am out and about and I feel to share my joy, I like to smile to everyone I encounter until they smile back. When I play this game I am happy to say that almost everyone smiles back eventually! I am amazed by the people who manage to maintain a solemn expression, as I find it almost impossible not to smile when I am smiled at.
The power of the smile is such for me and my family that simply the mention of a smile can bring one to our faces, and we often help one of my daughters to cheer up by talking about happiness and smiling, just saying the letter S makes her smile involuntarily even when she is stubbornly trying to stay upset!
One thing I have noticed about smiles is that some peoples whole faces light up in the most astonishingly radiant manner when they smile, it can be a complete transformation! To me this suggests that a full face/full body smile is something we could all do if we were so inclined.
So I have been practising half smiles and full whole face/full body smiles in front of the mirror as a little experiment to feel the difference in the effects of those smiles on my feelings.
My results so far are simple! Appart from the face ache and feeling slightly mad when I fully smile with my whole body, I can report that the half committed small smile is not a patch on the joy I feel when smiling whole heart-soul and bodily! plus the way I look when I smile with my heart and soul is infinitely more pleasing.
To smile with my whole body takes a willingness to be open hearted, which I find takes a portion of bravery and sometimes a reminder to do it with strangers.
How would the world be I wonder if everyone went out tomorrow with the intention of sharing their whole body open hearted smile with everyone they meet?
There would be out-brakes of joy all over our beautiful planet!
Part of the problem with sharing open hearted behaviour with people we don't yet know could be to do with language; strangers! The word implies some sort of unwholesome aspects. A quick look online at synonyms produces the word 'aliens' as an alternative, and word that certainly doesn't fill me with confidence, sci-fi nightmares and mountains made of mashed potato are the first thing which springs to my mind!
So I'm going to keep being open hearted when I feel brave, I'm going to CHOOSE BRAVE FEELING THOUGHTS after all strangers could be friends I have not yet met and with smiles like those whole body ones I certainly would love to share Joy with them, and I might never know who they are if I don't share my own smile!
Today I feel Loving Gratitude for my smile
I feel Loving Gratitude for large text
I feel Loving Gratitude for my glasses
I feel Loving Gratitude for my clothes
I feel Loving Gratitude for my strong body
I feel Loving Gratitude for playfulness
I feel Loving Gratitude for sleep
I feel Loving Gratitude for the wild places
I feel Loving Gratitude for the cracks in the pavement
I feel Loving Gratitude for the stunning array of wild flowers on my walks