Smile and Watch the World

An old Chinese proverb says that a person without a smiling face should not open a shop. Another version of that same Chinese philosophy says that you should have a smile that would bring a good price in the marketplace.

Would others say that you should open a shop? Would they offer a good price for your smile? Would you rather be a beacon of light or a messenger of darkness?

I once attended a lavish party where everyone was very well dressed. I noticed one particular lady, obviously wealthy by the size of her jewels, standing alone. She had apparently spent a lot of money on her exterior. However, the frown on her face explained why no one seemed interested in talking with her. This lady obviously didn’t realize that her face said much more than her jewelry.

Someone, whether male or female, can appear to be quite attractive physically. However, without a smile, that attractiveness is quickly lost. On the other hand, I’ve often noticed someone who wasn’t especially attractive getting the attention of everyone around them. The big reason was an easy and glowing smile.

I was in a crowded waiting room of a doctor’s office some time ago. Everyone seemed lost in their own thoughts. A lady walked in with a cute baby. As she sat down, the baby looked at the people around him and simply smiled. Several of the adults instinctively smiled back at the baby. Before long, everyone in that waiting room was smiling at the happy baby. The entire atmosphere of the room was uplifted by that baby’s smile.

My mother, may she rest in peace, had a captivating smile. She built a large and highly successful children’s nursery in the Midwest with her personality, her charm and her ability to make people like her. When a parent walked in the door, whether an existing or new client, she greeted them with a warm smile and an enthusiastic “welcome!”

Dale Carnegie says, in the book How to Win Friends and Influence People, that actions speak louder than words, and that a smile says that you like the other person. That they make you happy. That you are glad to see them.