05 September 2010

Smiling is my Favorite Exercise

Sure, there's obvious things that make us smile...

Like a delicious Greek Yogurt Parfait with
Smart Bran Cereal, Blueberries and Cinnamon

Sometimes you have to visually see the difference a smile can make...

Even if it feels like your the only one who notices!

I often wonder why genuine smiles come at a price nowadays, and why the cashier cannot comprehend my "Can I have a smile with that?" order.

My point is that we've become emotionally deficient,
at least to the people outside of our "comfort zone"

We're too busy, too focused, too angry, too important, too stressed, too independent, too unrelatable, too insignificant, too guarded, too hurt, etc.

Too full of excuses to see the importance in a single smile :)

Action: Smile at random strangers this weekend.
Notice: Do they smile back or blankly stare back at you?
Think: If you've ever received a smile from a stranger passing by, you know the comforting feelings it projects.

That one smile carries with you
 and gets passed along to others... 

But can one smile really make a difference?
I guess it's up to you to find that out.


Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen said... [reply]

Isn't it weird how a smile is so important. There is a line in the movie Steel Magnolias..."smile, it increases your face value". I love that line. When we walk in the morning, we make a point to smile and say good morning to people. It is weird how mean it seems when others won't even look at you and smile. Anyway, I am with you! I will make a point to add some smiles to my day today. Have a great one Kelsey!

Mel said... [reply]

Oh such a lovely post, girl! You just made my sunday <3 I often times recognize that smiling at strangers is really uplifting! I believe, if you carry a positive and open attitude it will immediately be reflected by others :) have a wonderful sunday!! xoxo Mel

lynn @ the actors diet said... [reply]

i loved this post! i do believe a smile can make a difference. but i do have to say that sometimes i REALLY HATE IT when some random dude on the street tells me to smile. it feels sexist!

Mark said... [reply]

Outside of our own social circles, it seems that smiling is a lost art. I think if a stranger smiled at me, I'd question their motives. It's a shame really, because I hear that we weren't always like this :)

Joanne said... [reply]

I love this post! I think one smile can definitely make a difference. First of all, forcing yourself to smile will actually make you happy. So there's one plus. And I know I find myself in an infinitely better mood when someone else smiles at me. It just feels good.

Nattie. said... [reply]

Such a beautiful post! A smile definitely travels miles and miles and I love receiving smiles and giving them in return. You're right though, to smile at complete strangers is especially difficult, but whenever they smile back, it warms my heart!

As they say, A smile is a curve that sets everything right!


Krista said... [reply]

I always make it a point to smile at people. There's nothing worse than being rude, IMO. Great post, Kelsey!

Tori said... [reply]

I smile at customers all the time at work. I have to admit though, I don't do it ALL the time. It does get tiring, and I just am thinking about what I'm going to be doing later, or getting home in a couple hours. You have to remember that whoever isn't smiling at you, may not be generally an unsmiling/rude person. They just may have something else they're thinking about :)

<3 Tori

Heather (Where's the Beach) said... [reply]

Ah this is sooooo true. Everyone is so guarded. I always try to smile when I pass by people. Most of the time they return the smile. When they don't, i just want to stop them and shake them. Not only does smiling at someone make them feel better, it makes you feel better too. Smile to you sweetie!

Emily said... [reply]

Your parfait is so cute. I do think people today are very internally focused and selfish (me included!). It takes conscious effort to reach out and be vulnerable. I think your challenge is a good one!

Chef Dennis Littley said... [reply]

no wonder your yogurt was smiling, it saw what you were adding next! A smile costs nothing but returns so much....it can really change a persons day.....thanks for reminding us of that!

Anonymous said... [reply]

loooooove this! i always try to have a smile on my face when i walk around campus or when i'm at the caf or rec center. it really can make someone's day!

Madeline - Greens and Jeans said... [reply]

I grew up in a smallish town in the Midwest and I ALWAYS smile at people! Sometimes I get strange looks, but it makes me happy when people smile back!

Samantha said... [reply]

A teacher in one of the leadership classes I took in college would always tell us to do the same thing. People have a hard time understanding why someone is smiling at them :)
I love your blueberry smiley face!

Light Delight with Tou Tou said... [reply]

hahaha you are so funny girl! I smiled too with those blue berries!
have a great weekend!

mariposai said... [reply]

Aw! I actually smile quite alot, and it's always really rewarding when I smile at strangers and get one back. There is alot to be said for such a simple action, and it costs nothing to smile, but brings so much happiness to lots of people :-)

Sarah x

elk said... [reply]

I recently moved from a pretty small south west...erm...'hippy'...town, for lack of a better adjective, to a larger more civilised town (Britain may be small, but there's a big difference between the areas) and I forgot that people don't really smile anymore in the street :( It was just so normal to grin and chat to strangers where I was before, probably while queuing to buy tea and bananas, and probably while still wearing your pajama trousers with bed hair. It was a somewhat chilled out town... but it was nice because the pace of life was pretty slow.
Here everyone dresses to impress and scowl at you if you say 'hi'.
My dad and I have devised this game we play whenever we're walking the dog together. We smile at passers by and see how many return the grin. It really varies depending on location.
If I'm having a really crappy day I'll try to get myself out for a walk, and just smiling at people you pass by, and when they say hello is such a mood booster. It just gives you that incredibly cheesy warm fuzzy feeling.
I really love that wee cartoon! It's brilliant :D

Chelsea said... [reply]

Cute post, Kels! :) I love the feeling of a stranger smiling at me. Sometimes it can completely brighten up my day. So I always keep that in mind and try to smile at others.

Anonymous said... [reply]

What a sweet post :)

I have to say that my dad actually used to always order "a free smile" whenever we went to McD when I was a kid. It was hilarious and the cashier always gave him such an odd look!

Anonymous said... [reply]

Oh and Kelsey I gave you a blog award this morning - I hope you get a chance to check it out :)

Lena said... [reply]

It's funny how much of a difference a simple smile can make...and how few people even bother. I'll admit that I am guilty of this too sometimes, so thank you for the reminder that I should smile more :)

shesarunner said... [reply]

Aww I love this post! You are such a beautiful person and you are so right. You can make someone's day just by smiling at them, and it is so important. I know that when one is feeling utterly depressed and hopeless, it really does help for someone to smile or be kind. It restores your faith that there is good in the world and that things will get better, even if they seem completely hopeless right now. That makes such a big difference in a person's life.

Joy | The life of Joy said... [reply]

Wow. I LOVE this one. There is some mystery in your post, wich I love!!

I really is up to you. A smile really makes a diffrent!


Alex @ I Eat Asphalt said... [reply]

This was practically my mantra for the first week of classes. Just smile and things will be fine. I dont know how much it affected other people but it really made me feel better.

Gina; The Candid RD said... [reply]

Great post, we need this reminder. Actually I'm all about smiling to strangers, especially now that I work in a grocery store. I often find that I am always smiling while at work, which is a great thing. Sometimes people smile bad, other times they don't. I feel sorry for those who don't. How hard is it to SMILE?!?! :)

lequan@luvtoeat said... [reply]

Great post Kelsey! Your blog always makes me smile. So without even smiling at me, you've already accomplished your mission, whether you know it or not. So thank you for the smiles you bring into my life. A smile definitely does go a long ways. Big huge smile back at you, dear! Have a wonderful weekend!

Alycia [Fit n Fresh] said... [reply]

Aww SO cute!! Loved the smiling blueberries and the comic at the end. I smile at everyone, it's involuntary :)

Asha Raval said... [reply]

This is soo true. People are so uncomfortable with each other and have a hard time looking other people in the eye if they are strangers. Its interesting how far a smile can go to brighten another person's day and make them feel special and "seen". Smiles also work well on the grumpiest and most intimidating people ;))))

And I must say that your blueberries and yogurt look soo delicious YUM!!

Thanks for all your positive energy and I hope you get lots of smiles today as well as giving them!


Kristy Sayer-Jones @ Southern In Law said... [reply]

A smile can make all the difference in the world! You just never know how another person is feeling, and who knows - you could make their day!

I've noticed that in my neighbour hood, when I smile at the older people they'll be all friendly and smile back - but the younger people I smile at just stare. It's kind of odd, but I guess society has changed a fair bit, I'm all for old fashioned values! Yay old people :P

My Bite said... [reply]

Thank you for reminding us of this simple action. Just reading your post made me feel good (I love the cute pictures)
It does make such a difference when people smile, and I must say I should be doing it more myself even if others aren't. I will give the "smile at a stranger" challenge a go tomorrow :)

Lisa (bakebikeblog) said... [reply]

I totally agree - and that cartoon is too cute!!!! Sending lots of smiles :)

Anonymous said... [reply]

I love getting a "happy cashier," and likewise - like to be the happy cashier at work. Doing little things like simply being friendly to and smiling at people you don't even know really do make a difference. Not only do they make myself feel better, they're bound to make the person feel better :)

Kady said... [reply]

It always makes me happy when a stranger smiles or says hi to me! I usually say "hi" or "good morning" when I go by others on the bike/walking path (did it a few times this morning!). It also really lifts my mood when someone does some simple kind gesture, like hold the door for me. These are all so easy to do everyday, but sometimes we get so caught up in our own lives/troubles, we forget.

Kiki said... [reply]

I agree that society today is pretty unfriendly... I try to be outgoing to almost everyone I meet, whether I know them or not, and some people just don't know how to deal with it! But it's totally worth it if I get just one smile back :)

Oh and food smilies ftw!

Ellen@FirednFabulous said... [reply]

Ohh that looks YUMMY. And yes, a smile can make a difference...esp in NYC where it doesn't happen often!

Anonymous said... [reply]

hey gorgeous girl!
I am smiling at your right now because your parfait is too cute for words! :)
I hope youve had a great weekend!

Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter said... [reply]

Cute post! A smile can really make just one person's day better. I love using the confidence that I have to smile at someone who may not have that confidence. It seems to put a bit more of a skip in their step!

Anonymous said... [reply]

What a wonderful post...

The act of smiling actually can be contagious, I think.

Anonymous said... [reply]

I love this! I try and smile at everyone I pass when I'm running. Most people won't even look up at me.

Kris | iheartwellness.com said... [reply]

Come to my house doll! Make me a smile ;) I love this!

Doesn't it make you feel better when your food smiles at you ;)


Lele said... [reply]

There is something about that lopsided blueberry smile that makes my heart happy.
I try and spend time with kids (which is why my new job is perfect) because they smile all the time for no reason in particular and it's awesome. I think my default face is frowny, which I hate!

Christina said... [reply]

what a fantastic idea! i'm going to smile at random people tomorrow!! :) :)

Allie (Live Laugh Eat) said... [reply]

Aww cute. I smile at random strangers a lot. I guess I people watch a lot and when they look back I just smile :)

Monet said... [reply]

I think smiling can make such a difference in not only your day, but in the days of those you meet. I try to smile at friends, family and strangers, and I so appreciate the encouragement. I hope you have a wonderful Monday filled with lots of laughter and smiles!

Sarah @ Gluten-free tries Vegan said... [reply]

Cute post, lady! I'm all about the free smiles- can't beat them. I like smiling at people as I walk by (I give them the once over first to see if they'll appreciate though :P)

Jessie said... [reply]

I never knew that yogurt could be adorable before, Kelsey, but now I know :) Smiling is contagious - I mean, I smiled now while looking at your yogurt! I think now especially people don't smile as much, which is too bad. I'll try to smile more to make up for it! :D Have a GREAT day!

Anonymous said... [reply]

I love yogurt parfaits and I seriously make myself one at least once a day. As for smiling...I have been working on it. I have people who smile at me all the time when I am running on this trail near my condo. It does uplift my mood most times. :)

Anonymous said... [reply]

lovely post! smiling is such a powerful thing to do, both for us and for others!
Act the way we want to feel! :D

Jen said... [reply]

Too true!!!! Whenever I smile at someone in the grocery store I get looked at as if I were being offensive!! It's so sad that that is the way that people are today!!
Oh and by the way, that yogurt parfait looks amazing!!!

TheHealthyApron said... [reply]

OMG what a great idea! It's so true, people are so emotionally disconnected these days! What does it take to have a little kindness toward a stranger? Why is it so difficult!?

Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin said... [reply]

Cute post! Lately I've been trying to smile when I'm running or biking at other bikers/runners on the path and most of the time they smile back. It makes me smile even more when I know I've given someone a little pep in their step... no one expects you to smile at them!

Candice @ ChiaSeedMe said... [reply]

Love this post - so cute! I always try to smile at people, especially cashiers and the like - it can be a little bit of a downer when you get a stare in return. But it's so encouraging when they smile back! Hopefully either way it brightened their day a bit. It definitely brightens mine:)

Lee said... [reply]

good post, but it needs more bacon!

Anonymous said... [reply]

I could not have said this better myself. Smiling is something that I need to work on. It is true though, when a stranger smiles at you, it can instantly put you in a better mood. I love when you meet genuine nice people and they smile at you. When people smile at me it makes me feel like they are not judgemental, ya know what I mean. Gosh I LOVED this post, you just got my brain flowing with so many more ideas for my next upcoming posts!


Laury @The FitnessDish said... [reply]

a smile really DOES make a big difference..I know countless times I was feeling down, where a stranger shot a genuine smile at me, and it changed my mood in that instant--they really are contagious!

Missy said... [reply]

Hip Hip Hooray for smiling food and smiling humans! You are awesomey, blossomy, smile-ossomy!

Kelsey said... [reply]

What a cute post! I think I'll make a raspberry smile in my cereal tomorrow morning!

teenagehealthfreak.wordpress.com said... [reply]

you are so right girl! i just thought about it..and like i would think wierd thoughts almost if someone smiled at me..it's like.."oo creeper, why you smilin'??" lol..i'm gunna smile a lot trmo!!! THANKS :)

Tehsina said... [reply]

I love this post! My boyfriend and I will often smile or say hi to people on the street and often get weird stares. It's so unfortunate to see how much of society has become emotionally deficient. It's really nice to see that some people are trying to break this norm.

Keep smiling girl!

Anonymous said... [reply]

I used to play a game in college when I walked across campus - I would smile at as many ppl as possible and see how many smiles I could get in return.

Obviously I also enjoy smiling and I also love blue berries! Cute post

Ameena said... [reply]

Smiling can definitely change just one person's day! I know that when I'm around a happy person I can't help but smile too.

Great post Kelsey. You are one of the happiest people I know and I love that about you!

Anonymous said... [reply]

aww this is adorable :) a smile definitely changes my day (esp from a cute guy heehee) but im pretty sure a smile on my cereal would make me pretty happy too!
i'm off to smile at a stranger now, but i'm sending one your way too!

Anonymous said... [reply]

This made ME smile! I will think of this throughout the day when the stress monster wants to take over!

Anonymous said... [reply]

Awww I LOVE it when I see strangers on the street smiling! Whether at me or to themselves, I just love it. I think a smile can really make someone's whole day. It's worth a million bucks. :D

Rebekah (clarity in creation.) said... [reply]

this is so true! i always try to smile at others - who knows if it's the only kindness they get all day?

Sarah said... [reply]

Such a true and creative post!
I completely believe that a smile can make a BIG difference:-).

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