Bare Thoughts: Real Smiles
People are most beautiful when they smile. Not when they’re smiling for a photo, but really smiling. When they laugh at their kids jumping into a pool. When they cry from tears of happiness. When they find out they landed their dream job. When they find out they’re expecting.
Kids are really good at it. Only on rare occasions will you catch a child imitating a smile. We come into this world alive, bold, raw and fearless. It’s life that wears us down. We’re shut down by others. Our feelings are hurt. We get into accidents. We experience loss. Loss in our careers. Our parents. Our partners. Our friends.
Each day we experience a whirlwind of emotion we can’t even begin to process. Our subconscious tries to protect us by burying it all. Brushing it aside. We begin hiding our shameful parts. Ashamed of our flaws.
Day by day, we discipline ourselves to hide our flaws. To only show the good parts. To be on our best behavior. To always be okay. To be practical.
But being practical isn't what brings true happiness. You won’t find the real smiles. Real joy. Real joy comes from pursuing. From working hard towards what you love. From building a company. Owning a flower shop. Tending a garden. Singing on stage. Baking cakes. Surrounding yourself with good people.
True happiness is found in the simplest of things. Happiness is found in the trees we climb, sharing secrets with our best friend. It’s in the silent exchange of smiles or sudden bursts of laughter. It’s in the pink afternoon skies painted daily. It’s in the bike rides along the coast. In the photoshoots at sunrise, while the rest of the world is still fast asleep. In the 2 a.m. pillow talks. In the kitchen baking sweet treats, while dancing to good music. In the 6 a.m. gym sessions and 12 oz coffees that come afterwards.
Happiness doesn’t have to be this rare, difficult thing to find. It can be the magic in everything. Someone very wise and special once told me, “You may think things aren’t working, but as long as you are clear in your desires, goals and aspirations, the universe will work on it. Every day the universe is orchestrating your life. Don’t try to figure out how or you will get bogged down. You have magic all around you––trust that.”
And when you finally trust it––you find the magic. The creativity. The passion. The fulfillment. And when you find all the things––people see the real smiles.
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Written by Angelina Lewis