"Making Gratitude Contagious"
Which began in 2014 to INSPIRE
Now it is "Gratitude Intensified"
Which began in 2014 to INSPIRE
Now it is "Gratitude Intensified"
I meet some fabulous, sweet, genuine people, most of which appear to be "high on life". Some folks are animated and some are more serene, but a common denominator appears to be all is well and they appear to be at peace with life, faces that show a smile.
The Word "Appearance". . .really is a loaded word when you reflect on it.
Most of us are conditioned from childhood to have proper etiquette in public, which I do agree with, but because of it, I believe we learn early to wear masks. How often are we greeted or greet others and the general question is. . "Hi, how are you? With a response that follows of,
"Good, Great or Fine, Thank You" or something similiar that "all is well with life".
Realistically. . .we can't be a society of greeting each other, which turns into a speech or log of problems and concerns. Talk about misery, we really would be isolated, who would chance a meet and greet like that. . .consistently. We would AVOID each other more, greeting each other would be out of the question in this scenario. It would be to overwhelming and not to mention time consuming.
The proper etiquette spills over into our Family Dynamics and includes those we call dear friends, even with the proclaimed girl's "BFF" or the guy's "ACE", the same holds true. The familiar lines, "All is Well", "Things are Good". A few surface things are shared, after all, these titles come with an understanding of having a trusted, "close" relationship, right? and the rest is smooth sailing, keep it light, right?!
I'm not expecting to walk up to people and have a conversation and they give a journal on what is wrong with life. If you listen or read my posts, you know my nature is take the negatives and find the positives, to take a challenge head on, doing the things I can and seeking God's Wisdom for the many things I have no control over and having the Faith He will guide me along to the best direction for my Journey.
It is always a CHOICE, to find the Beauty in the Ashes, to see the Sun peeking out in the rain. To find the JOY and to make the effort to input the positive things into my mind, into my heart. There is a saying, the mouth speaks out what the heart is filled with, something like that, so that concludes that what we feed on, is sown into our heart, our mind, and that is what our mouth will naturally speak about.
What is the Point for the Blog Topic this week?
It started with the question; "How Much Pain is Behind a Smile?"
The Point is to become more Aware and to Know that their can be Pain Behind a Smile
The passing of Robin Williams recently is one of many reminders, how the pain can run deeper than the conversation, than the laughter or the smiles being shared. He is a name recognized, which allowed conversation in many circles and on most media, on the subject, but who do we know, that might surround our lives right now and we not recognize the same pain or similar pain could exist behind the smile.
I'm reminded of an acquaintance who killed herself and I actually had seen her a month prior to this horrific incident. I didn't know her personally and our paths only crossed because she was visiting and supporting a family who had recently had a death in their family. I was in attendance for the same reason. She smiled a lot that day and was hugging and supporting the family. She drew my attention because she made the effort to bring food and served what she had prepared. She smiled, she winked (as if to imply, I'm here, it will be okay) and she seemed so alert to hearing others share their grief during that time. In reflection, their were no signs of her apparent pain and her apparent struggles behind her smile. When I heard the news about what happened to her, I wondered if their was something I could have seen, could have asked. If I could have offered an open door by asking, "How are things your way?" Then to listen, to be aware of the words that may have been spoken. I knew she had lost a sibling in a car accident a year prior, so I knew enough that maybe I could have asked.
I can't change Yesterdays, but I can be alert to Today
and to the Tomorrows, along my Journey.
We Live, We Learn and We share our Experience and who knows who it might help along the way. The effort is to be more alert of what we say and what we do.
Maybe, we should all slow down, with those who are closer to us and or associated with us, to ask a genuine question (beyond etiquette), "How are things?". To ask, to listen, to let others know that we care. Many times you realize, if they share, that most challenges in life are familiar and no one holds an exemption pass, but maybe in the asking, maybe in the availability to be alert and to listen, it could be a difference maker in a situation, it could be an opportunity to let someone you know you are there.
Sometimes, a person is not looking for a solution; sometimes in "the Moment", they just need a trusted ear, a place to vent, a confidant for the moment, someone who holds no judgement and can be trusted not to broadcast their business with every person that they know.
Just a Moment. . Just a Moment, for us all to be aware that there could be in that moment,
Pain behind that smile and we all need to "Leave a Little Room".
This week's post is a reminder that so much goes on in the lives of so many. No one is exempt from the Challenges, the Valleys of living life, in walking out our journey. With every path, there will be "Highs" and we will have "Lows" along the Journey. It is called life.
We need to be a little more patient, leave a little more room for the person whose service wasn't the greatest at a dinner out or didn't get the order exactly right, to overlook the cashier who doesn't greet our arrival or wish us a good day. To not get caught up in the rage for the car that cut you off or desperately is trying to get around you in crowded traffic. We need to leave a little more room, to have a little more patience, to make a choice to not get angry or to get upset. It is a choice and who knows maybe those encounters are people on the moment of a breaking apart point, who really knows?!
With those closer to us, our family, our close friends, to leave the same room, maybe even more for the times when their actions or words is out of character, of who you know they are and have been in times past. Room to vent, room to think about their acting out may have been towards you (but 95% of time is not about you), so a little more room. A little more patience, consider for that moment that this behavior is out of character, give out the "No Offense Taken Pass". Allowing the space, allowing the room for that person to get back on track, to get back on and continue there Journey.