Last year I read a fantastic book called The Boston Girl by Jewish author Anita Diamant. This story of a grandmother sharing with her granddaughter her life stories, trials and coming-of-age in pre-World War II Boston gave me much to ponder.
One of my favorite quotes was this statement: “When I look at my eighty-five-year-old face in the mirror today, I think, ‘You’re never going to look better than you do today honey, so smile.’ Whoever said a smile is the best face-lift was one smart woman.”
This is beautiful.
There are so many days that smiling is the last thing we want to do.
- How do we keep a smile on our face when we’ve had a major disappointment?
- How do we smile through the tears when we’ve lost a loved one?
- How do we smile when the bank account is depleted, but we need to pay our employees and the electric bill to keep the lights on?
- How do we smile when we’ve just lost one of our biggest accounts and our business cash flow is suddenly in the red?
Well, we just do. We fake it until we make it because we are women, and that’s what we do.
Women are some of the most compassionate, driven people you’ll ever meet, but conversely, they are some of the most insecure and unkind as well. We have so many stigmas from outside sources being thrown our way, day in and day out, about how we should act and react to life around us. We are told how to act when people are different from us, and we are told how we should express emotions and feelings.
How do we preserve our sanity, but keep it real with those we know we can trust?
It’s a challenge to be sure, but we must use our words and call on our chick tribe when we have a day, week – or month – that just seems like it’s a downhill slide into a heap of darkness.
- Who brings a smile to your face?
- Who do you live for and who lives for you?
Write their names down, express your deepest gratitude for the happiness they bring to your life and call on them when you need the boost. That’s what women do: we protect each other and build each other up; we bring sunshine on a cloudy day as many times as needed.
Living in the moment isn’t just a sappy meme that we find on Pinterest. It is life. When life has you down, whether in your personal or professional life, stop the negativity and think about the sunshine in your life right now. Look around you and see the blessings. For every fail, we have ten victories and blessings to recognize. Celebrate you and those victories, but also look at the failure or string of failures as fiercely painful learning experiences and press forward like the girl boss that you are meant to be.
In my professional life, I’ve been on the other side of the desk with a lot of female entrepreneurs who had to take some hard knocks to get where they were at the time I met them. I have seen businesses attempt to expand, only to fail, and they have had to pick up the pieces and start over. But I’ve also seen entrepreneurs who experienced miraculous breakthroughs in their business that took them to the next level nearly overnight.
The common denominator for each of these women? Their ability to do it with grace and a with smile on their face!
They also had their fair share of tears and anger, but when it came right down to it, the smiles won. Each had a very different set of circumstances, but they chose to smile in spite of being completely overwhelmed.
The moral of the story: smiling is definitely the best face lift, and we must hold tight to the reasons for happiness in our lives. If we aren’t smiling, we’re probably crying, and a rock star girl boss, like you or me, does not have time – or not much time, at least – for tears.
Rise above the challenges and smile!
Photo Credit: Kel-Z Photography in Ogden, Utah