Hey you! Yes, I am talking to you. Why don’t you smile often? I understand that these are trying times to be living in. There is a pandemic upon us, and millions around us are tired of being locked inside their houses. Moving from their rooms to the kitchen and back again. But does that give you reason enough to stop living and not give that gorgeous look on your face a reason to smile?
There are people among us who have lost their loved ones. Some who parted or got distanced from their partners. In fact, a few have lost their livelihood, and some are distressed about having caught their lifelong companion cheating upon them. It is ironic to be asking you all to be smiling in times like this, but then is it not happiness that we wanted all this time? To be satisfied and contented with ourselves.
I remember a little incident from a few months back. I ended up contracting the UK variant of covid-19 during isolation. It is bizarre to even think that one can catch an infection during quarantine. The same lasted for 28 days, a rarity among millions. Leaving me alone in a tiny London apartment with no one to look after me. Devoured of willpower or energy, I looked at myself in the mirror. All I saw was a face of a man feeling trapped inside. But who was this guy? It was not the person I knew.
That reflection is an embodiment of all of us. Why do we feel trapped? We feel trapped because we have no control over the situation. We feel trapped for having no say of ours. However, what differentiated me from that reflection was the realization that I controlled my fate and I was responsible for my happiness. I was my own guardian angel and no amount of negativity could destroy my spirit. And all it took to achieve that was a smile.
So why smile?
Smile is the only treasure that enriches both the giver and the receiver. The more you share the more it is valued. Once you smile, it might last only a moment but the memory of it lasts forever. Let me give you another little example.
I was once travelling to another city in a grumpy mood. Sitting in public transportation, I kept on judging every passerby in negativity. Picking up at random silliness until I caught a little child staring at me from a distance. That little turd met my gaze with a pleasant smile. The next moment, I realized, I was smiling. The ball of negativity was gone for a toss and I was greeting the people left, right, and centre. The sense of positivity it created carried itself from my work to home.
That is the power of a smile. It creates happiness at home, fosters goodwill in business, and is the countersign of friendship. It brings rest to the weary, uplifts the discouraged, hope to the sad, and is a perfect antidote for troubled times.
Yet it cannot be bought, begged, borrowed, or stolen, for it is something that is of no value to anyone else until it is shared.
Yes, I agree, some people are lost in obscurity to pass you a smile. But you can give them one of your smiles instead. After all, smiles are contagious, and none needs a smile as much as one who has none to give.
So I ask again, why smile?