It begins by touching your heart and then adding a smile…

A tiny bud of a smile on our lips nourishes awareness and calms us miraculously. It returns to us the peace we thought we had lost. Thich Nhat Hanh

Asking my students to smile at the end of class and give gratitude towards their wonderful bodies may seem trite or insignificant at times. But the truth is, no act of compassion is too small. Sharing a smile, turning the corner of your mouth up just a few degrees can change your entire attitude and that of others. It begins by being aware that you are capable of such power—turning your attitude in a positive direction and in doing so, you offer that power to others.

Awareness is consciously making a choice every morning to decide how your day will unfold. Being present in this awareness is equal measure empowerment and pacification You have the power to be positive and share your smile with others. You also have the ability to bring a degree of calmness and security to yourself and others. All by using the extraordinary muscles found right around your jaw. Turned up they ease your worry, calm your mind, create compassion for those around you.

Everyday there are choices to be made. Many are simple and require little thought. Others, are looming and stressful and require your acute attention. We may not be able to loose ourselves completely into a blissful stress-free state by simply smiling, but practice today being aware of your smile. Smile more, smile freely, smile knowing you are powerful, kind, and compassionate.

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