It’s four o’clock in the afternoon…I’m exhausted, cranky and I’m faced with the prospect of making dinner. And you know what dawns on me? I haven’t smiled today!
If you’re a mother of a child older than eight months, I’m sure you’ve had a day (or month) where you literally had to remind yourself to smile. I find myself traveling through my day, with my checklists, agendas, stresses and worries clogging up my brain and making it nearly impossible for me to just chill, feel joy and smile. I can only imagine what my face must look like most of the time with my kids. I certainly do not want them to think of me and think of a sour face or worried look.
Why does joy fade with age, and stress and fear grow?
Maybe it’s because we’ve seen more…we know what can go wrong and that nothing is guaranteed. I think part of the problem stems from habit. We go through a stressful time and the habit of fear and worry takes over, leaving us shells of our once very peppy, happy selves – the kind of person who has to remind themselves to smile at their kids and find humor in the little things.
Joy stems from our hearts and radiates outwards. The phrase “fake it, til you make it” couldn’t be more true in the case of joy. It’s hard to feel miserable when you are plastering a smile on your face and giggling with your littles. Repeating Bible verses to yourself, leaving sticky notes with uplifting verses, cute pictures, etc. can be really easy reminders to your soul to smile.