We need to find new ways to spread smiles #UnmaskYourFeelings

A friend of mine tweeted about how spreading smiles is so difficult from behind a mask. I liked the tweet and moved on with my day. But as I sit here on my balcony thinking about how life has changed in the last few weeks, the memory of my friend brought a smile to my face. That tweet managed to break through the mask and reach me. 

It reminded me of a quote I had read, about smiling “We shall never know all the good that a simple smile can do.” – Mother Teresa

I began to think of things that gave me joy and made me smile this week. Top of the list is my lovely little doggie, Cookie. A countless number of smiles is what she has gifted me and my family. She knows how to show her feelings as they come upon her. It is this honesty of emotion and unconditional love, that brings forth so many smiles.

My daily calls with dad, and by extension, the larger family also work too. We tell each other “I love you” much more than we ever used to. We are more connected now, sharing with each other our daily pleasures and pains. Sharing smiles mostly, along with the occasional bad news, which is somehow easier to accept when shared with family or close friends. 

Acknowledging others at work for something awesome they have done was another moment in time when a smile crept in unannounced. It takes the smallest effort to call out someone who has done something well. To send a thank you mail or to be at the receiving end of one, is a sure fire smile generator. To be acknowledged. To matter. These are the things that spread smiles. Sharing of genuine feelings, from behind the mask is the task at hand. We cannot be too busy or too anxious to do this. Spreading smiles has to be a number one priority. 

When I go for my morning walk with cookie, I always used to smile at the security guards, other walkers and the gardener’s. Now thanks to my mask, they cannot see my smile and I cannot see theirs. I need to find new ways to connect with them. When visual ‘smile’ communication is now no longer possible for others to see, courtesy the mask, I need to rely on audio communication (my voice) to say hello, good morning, how are you today….  Sometimes just a wave of the hand from an appropriate social distance, as I try my best to smile with my eyes.

In this wonderful world there are still so many things that you can do to spread a smile. 

And that’s the note I would like to end on, as stupid as it may seem, I smile at people from under my mask and hope they can feel it, even if they can’t see it. I would love to hear from you about things that made you smile and how to pass that forward.

Now is a good time as any to #UnmaskYourFeelings and focus on finding new ways to #SpreadSmiles. Stay happy. Stay healthy. Stay at home and keep smiling.

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Nikhil Dey
Nikhil Dey is Executive Director, Adfactors PR.

A trusted coaching and communications professional, Nikhil Dey is a certified life and leadership coach (International Coach Federation - ICF). Nurturing talent and helping clients achieve their goals is what makes him happy. He loves learning from students of communication, teaching courses and guest lecturing at various educational institutions. When he is not working you will find him on the tennis court or out for long walks with his family and four legged friends.

Previously he has held senior leadership positions at Weber Shandwick and Genesis BCW.

He can be reached on twitter @deydreaming

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