This past weekend, I received a brief note from one of my out-of-town friends.  It read, “Do you see the smile?” and linked to this image:

Indeed, I did see the smile!   I responded, “I absolutely do!” – and then I asked the sender if he would like me to post the picture to the ‘smile blog’ (as many of my friends have begun to affectionately call this space).

He responded, “Up to you. I saw it and thought of the smile blog. Without the smile blog, I might not have been looking for this and missed it.”

That last sentence made my heart singI started this blog, well, because I kind of felt like I “had to” – like I was being directed by a power greater than myself to begin creating this space.  (And I know better than to ignore or resist that power.)  I then posted to the blog every day for a year because I personally had so much fun keeping my eyes (and heart) open for some cool little nugget of surprise or delight throughout the day, and getting to re-experience that small treasure every evening when I wrote the daily entry.

Then, an interesting thing happened.  People started reading my blog.  And over the course of weeks and months, they started looking for smile-inducing moments in their lives.  People also started telling other people they knew about the blog – and those new people started to read and look for smiles, too.  Smiles began to stack up and spread.  People started to loosen up and lighten up, one kooky story at a time.

These days, every now and again someone will come to my desk, or give me a call, or send me a note, and say something along the lines of, “Hey; I saw such-and-such today, and I smiled – and then I thought of you.  And I just wanted you to know.”

And I smile big and wide, every single time.  It’s an exchange that always infuses me with joy – and I delight in the positive influence we all have on each other.  Indeed, we are all so much more powerful than we really know.

So here’s to smiles just waiting to be discovered amid vehicles and vegetables – and my appreciation for those of us who are silly enough and thoughtful enough to share them.  🙂


About Stef

A "serious" gal who is trying to remember to lighten up and smile.
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12 Responses to Influence

  1. barb19 says:

    Hehehe! You blog always makes me smile Stef, and you see the effect it is having on people, with your friend sending you the link to that “smile” on the back of that vehicle! They are thinking of you and your blog! Your blog is having a positive effect on us and that’s fantastic!
    Indeed, we are all much more powerful than we know.


    • Stef says:

      Barb, thank you so much for your kind words! People have a big influence on me, too – and I’m very grateful when people share their kindness and compassion with me. 🙂


  2. Touch2Touch says:

    Pretty nifty, Stef — to be known as the Smile Lady!
    Congratulations on your successful “missionary” work!!!!!!!!!


    • Stef says:

      Judith, it’s pretty darn amazing. That wasn’t necessarily my intention when I started this space; but I will happily accept it in my life.

      I forwarded the link to this post to my friend who send me the picture, and he replied, “Now that makes me smile again. Omg! It’s a vicious circle!” To which I answered, “That’s a cycle I can get behind.” 🙂


  3. deenie12 says:

    I loved this post, Stef. You’ve created a truly positive space with this blog, and I love stopping by to read what you have to say. It makes me so happy to know that others delight in the positive experiences you have, and that they have been “trained” to look for their own daily smiles. Since reading your blog, I, too, am more aware of the smiles that are all around me. Thank you!!


    • Stef says:

      Nadine, I love that you are more aware of the smiles all around – what a wonderful way to live life! 🙂 Thank you for your very sweet words; I truly appreciate them.


  4. Great photo! the person who sent it certainly had imagination!


  5. I see the smile too! 🙂 Now I want to look extra hard for smiles to share. I love your blog, it always gives me something to smile about!


    • Stef says:

      Aw, I’m delighted to read that – thank you for sharing! If you do see some smiles out and about, I’m always open to guest bloggers contributing. 🙂


  6. you are changing the world – one smile at a time – how incredible is that!


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