Smiling from the Heart

Our lives are so busy as we pursue so many goals; personal and professional. We live under the illusion that happiness is also something that can pursued and attained in this same way, when in fact; happiness is a gift- a gift we often miss when we are looking for something else. Something as simple as a smile from a passerby on the street or in the workplace may be missed as our thoughts cloud our vision as to what is happening in the moment. Yet this smile can trigger a biochemical ‘feel good’ response which in truth can change our inner state, our attitude and our point of view. A smile- a real smile from the heart- has the power to remove barriers and convey trust, kindness, openness, forgiveness, understanding, hope and any other life-giving quality. When we smile from the heart we drop our barriers of separation for a moment and we show our connection to others and in doing so contribute to not only our happiness and well-being, but to the happiness and well-being of those who receive our smile.

If, with a Big Mind, we take a wider perspective of our life and our work and ask ourselves, “What is my Work?” we may more clearly see that the situations that we find ourselves at work become opportunities to practice being what we are called to be, instruments of life and love! We may learn to Smile On these situations with gratitude and welcome them as guest who invites us to embrace life from a higher perspective. Gratefulness in the workplace takes on another dimension for us because we become a little more aware as to what our work is really all about.

When we live our life from our highest qualities, leading with love, and leaving behind our self-serving intentions, we become gifted with a sense of real happiness or joy. When we begin to look beyond our job description at our work, along with our demands, successes, and struggles by taking a step back and looking at our life with a bigger mind we begin to see life more clearly as a gift and experience a sense of gratitude and may even desire to share this gratefulness with others. In any concept of happiness, gratitude or gratefulness is a key ingredient and attitude or way of being worth adopting or practicing. Gratitude just might be the truest way of life because it calls us to remember that all that we have been given is blessing, but perhaps have taken for granted and that to respond with acts of gratefulness is only the right response to our gift of life. When practicing gratefulness we are acknowledging our relationship with the Giver, others and the world and realize that all is vital to our well-being. A simple smile laced with love and gratitude helps to contribute to an attitude or way of being that keeps our heart open, enabling us to give witness to the goodness of life amidst the struggles and absurdities that it brings sometimes. Our smiles become the counter measures to the effects of greed, separation, and entitlement so prevalent in today’s world, including our workplace.

The word ‘on’ (pronounced ‘own’) is a Japanese word referring to having a sense of debt of gratitude for that which has been given. The spirit of ‘on’ realizes that life is not a given, but that everything about life is a given; that to be alive is a blessing; and each of us has a responsibility to respond to this gift with respect, gratitude and kindness. Gratitude is a gift that keeps on giving, because as we begin to focus on bringing gratefulness into our lives, we begin to awaken more and more to what which has been given and in turn find ourselves continuing wanting to give thanks. By smiling on our uniqueness, our talents and our shortcoming, the uniqueness of others, our ancestors, our deceased relatives and friends and on all aspects of creation, we smile on all that contribute to our well-being and to the becoming all that we are called to be.

To graciously receive the blessing that have been bestowed upon us and to graciously reciprocate with a smile is to respect and honor the gift of life and the giver of life.