How can I keep smiling

Please smile! Why it is always worth being friendly

The world outside is getting rougher. That is precisely why it is particularly important that we are all nice to one another. A plea.

The day before yesterday I wanted to buy a bike. Then I changed my mind. Why? Because the guy in the shop, when asked if he had the wheels in other colors, grunted totally exasperated, "There are already seven here". I lost my desire to buy something from him.

Contrary to my first impulse to stink back, I just said "Bye" with a mild smile and left. I would buy the bike elsewhere - namely from the man from whom I bought my first bike a long time ago. The way was further, the selection smaller, but I knew that the seller would smile and put me in a good mood. He would also order me a different color if that would make me happy. I was sure of that.

I should have gone to him immediately. Because he made me feel good when he was kind to me. Because that's why it was nice to shop with him. Even if his shop window was perhaps not as "fancy" as the one in the shop in which I was recently cranked up.

Mucking over can mess up the whole day

Why am I writing this down here? Because I think we all know this feeling when someone else's pissing fucks us up all day. It starts in the morning on the way to work. It is much nicer when everyone is friendly. When the bus driver says "Hello" with a smile instead of looking stoically ahead, the cyclist shouts "This is a cycle path" with a friendly tone when we are lost - or two people laugh together instead of bleating.

By the way, according to studies, we are much happier when we smile a lot. Not just the other way around. Has anyone ever wondered why children often look so happy? Because they mostly get positive reactions - and reflect them.

Even smile on a shitty day

What I'm saying is, when each and every one of us smiles more, is friendlier, and just takes a step back, even if we've had a shitty day, everything is a lot easier. Personally, I don't always find it easy either. But it's worth it. Because of the children. Among other things, because mine are imitating me - and that is really not always an advantage. I noticed this after hissing very aggressively at a cyclist for almost running over one of my children. After that, the older child began to insult the cyclist in a rude tone. I didn't like that. On him and on me. I could really see from this imitation how caustic I had been.

You can practice being kinder

Since then I have been practicing being more friendly. Sometimes I even succeed. The other day a woman snapped at me for talking to a friend in the middle of the sidewalk. "You're standing in the middle of the way here, you have to walk around it. What's that supposed to mean !!!" she yelled rowdy in my direction. My interlocutor got angry and wanted to defend me: "But you can come over there wonderfully," he replied, slightly irritated. "Maybe I don't want to make a detour just because they're inconsiderate," the already nagging bellowed even louder.

Then I came across a technique that I had recently discussed with a behavior therapist. In conflict situations she had advised to simply ask questions. For example "What do you mean now?" Since this example did not fit, but would have really annoyed the poor angry woman, I took a deep breath and asked very gently and calmly: "But why are you so angry now?" Then the miracle happened! The woman lost the aggressive expression on her face, looked flabbergasted for a moment - and suddenly smiled at me. Then she said: "I don't know either". It was amazing how much prettier she looked all of a sudden without the tight expression on her face. We actually wished each other had a nice day, and I had a good feeling in my stomach. By the way, the whole thing is not a fairy tale, it happened the same way.

Fewer and nicer wrinkles

Just because of the feeling in your stomach when someone smiles back, it is worth practicing every time to smile more or to get rid of another kind of friendliness. A compliment, a nice sentence, a swooned "good morning" can never be wrong. In the worst case, someone does not react, in the best case it makes this world, which is often far too bad, a better place. Not to mention the nasty wrinkles that you save yourself by not going through life grimly.

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