Today, 6th October, is World Smile Day. Harvey Ball, an artist from Massachusetts created the smiley face in 1963. That image went on to become the most recognizable symbol of good will and good cheer on the planet. Harvey declared 6th October to be World Smile Day and the first international day was held in 1999 and has every year since.
Smiling is good for the soul. Not only does it use fewer muscles than frowning, not only is it the prettiest thing you can wear, but it can also make others feel good. A simple smile can change someone’s entire day, and best of all? It’s free!
To mark World Smile Day this year I wanted to help spread some smiles. We hear so often about how random acts of kindness are not only good for the people on the receiving end, but for the person carrying out the act.
I turned to some blogging friends to ask them what they had done recently to make someone smile.
“When I was waiting in line to grab a coffee there was a woman behind me who was having a really hard time trying to settle her baby and manage her young boy. She said that her baby was hungry that’s why he was fussing so I told her to take a seat so she could feed her baby and I would get her and her young son a drink. Just my offer had her in floods of tears with gratitude.I treated them both to lunch. I remember what it was like with a new baby and I know that it really helped her out so felt good doing a nice deed!” Sophie – Soph-obsessed.com
“It wasn’t recent but last year, I saw a radio comp on Facebook. It told us how you’d spend the £1000 if you won. I was ready to put my answer in when I saw an answer from a younger lady who said she’d buy her son a headstone for his grave. So I sent a private message to her on Facebook and offered to pay for it. We’re now Facebook buddies, she’s the loveliest lady and has now gone to have another child. It’s nice when we can give something without expecting something back.” Ally – thesmldietblog.co.uk
“I make my kids smile regularly with my list of dad jokes. They are young enough to still find them funny. It won’t last long though!” Pete – householdmoneysaving.com
“I paid someone’s car parking as they didn’t have change. It was only 80p but they were ridiculously grateful. It was lovely!” Beth – twinderelmo.co.uk
“My ten-year-old took 50p into school today to buy a cake at the Macmillan coffee morning, but during breakfast club he found one of the smaller boys from year one crying and went over to comfort him and find out why. He discovered that the child was upset as he had lost his 50p when playing so wouldn’t be able to buy a cake, without hesitation my son gave the child his 50p and said he didn’t mind not getting a cake. A teacher overheard and rewarded him with house points and I am so proud of my kindhearted young man.” Jennifer – mymummyspennies.com
“Before blogging and writing, I was a hairdresser. I don’t practice at all now, apart from one elderly gent who can’t get out. I went recently and when I’d finished my work, I hoovered his whole house and made him a cuppa. Small things, but it made him smile and made me feel so good knowing I’d made a difference to his day.” Zoe – thetaleofmummyhood.com
“I gave someone’s toddler on the bus a cereal bar because they were having an epic meltdown and the mum looked so stressed and close to tears – the meltdown stopped and the mum looked so relieved.” Lianne – anklebitersadventures.co.uk
“There was a young woman on the train sat opposite me, she was obviously ill and in pain. She called her mum and said she was feeling awful and that she needed some ibuprofen and then proceeded to sit with her head in her hands. I riffled through my backpack and found some ibuprofen and a drink and asked her if she would like them. She was very grateful and about half an hour later she looked obviously better. My bf said I shouldn’t have given her them but I feel I did the right thing.” Lynette – reclusivefox.com
“I live right near the Humber Bridge which has a toll and I love paying for the driver behind me too. It only costs £1.50 so a thrifty way to make someone’s day.” Hollie – thriftymum.com
“If I have plenty of time left on parking tickets that don’t need your reg plate I give them to someone else. It’s kind of become a ‘thing’ now, the kids automatically start looking for someone to gift them to. I hope the thought process rubs off on them when they’re older.” Sherry – kitsandvixen.co.uk
“I gave away a money off voucher I won to someone who had posted saying they were gutted they hadn’t won as they really needed it today. The lady said I was very kind which made me smile. It was a small gesture as I probably wouldn’t have used it anyway (I was trying to win the bigger prize for little man) but still nice to know I brightened someone’s day”. Becka – mummyest2014.wordpress.com
“I was holding my toddler’s hand in a supermarket carpark and walking towards the entrance. A young lady with a baby strapped to her and a toddler in the trolley seat was struggling to push her trolley as the road was slanted. No one came to her rescue and then a bag burst and her shopping rolled everywhere. I picked up my daughter and ran over. I asked Emmeline to help the lady pick up everything (she is going through a “helpful” phase) and I pushed her trolley to her car which was really nearby. She was so relieved and happy I helped her (she looked knackered and explained her newborn was a crap sleeper) – I couldn’t see why anyone wouldn’t help someone like that.” Alice – livingwithajude.co.uk
“There’s a cafe in a park near me that only takes cash, no cards (I know right!!). A guy in front of me ordered a coffee to take away, and after it was handed to him, he pulled out his Visa. Cue much awks and him asking where the nearest cashpoint was. Obviously, I paid for his drink for him.” Sam – mousemoometoo.com
“I’ve joined some local people that make art and hide it around the city. People love finding it and two of mine were found by children that thought they had found treasure and we’re beyond excited! I’ve always loved treasure hunting so it made me happy that these kids had a bit of adventure and got me feeling more creative too.” Laura – wafflemama.uk
“Not me but my husband, back in August there was one really awful day torrential rain and he has just picked the kids up from my mothers. An older guy was sheltering under a tree and he offered him a lift as he was carrying his shopping with him. He dropped him about 10 mins from where we live to his home house but we didn’t know him as we weren’t that long there ourselves. He was so thankful roll on a few days and a knock on the door this man was standing there with a massive bag of sweets. My husband hadn’t told me the story so I hadn’t a clue what was going on. Turned out that man was our next door neighbours dad but we were new so hadn’t a clue. We are all great friends and he still thanks my husband for the lift. Amazing how such small gesture meant so much to him.” Laura – themammafairy.com
“I was at Starbucks a few weeks ago and there was a guy with a disabled lady in her 20’s. She was in a wheelchair and was making lots of loud noises and screams. People were staring and laughing as he was trying to calm her down. The Starbucks staff were even giggling. He was getting more and more stressed out which was making her stress and get louder and more upset. I simply went over and told him he was doing a wonderful job and thanked him for taking such good care of someone despite the stares. I told him I understood because my son is disabled and does the same. He immediately calmed down and looked relieved. That, in turn, calmed her down and she stopped screaming. I went and got their drinks for them so he didn’t have to leave her. I never did find out if he was her father or carer but whichever he was, he was doing a great job.” Laura – mumoam.co.uk
“Baked a cake for an elderly neighbour and sat and had tea with her. Sadly she has no family and just needed some company.” Candace – bucketsoftea.co.uk
These acts of kindness really made me smile and I’m sure they have you too. My particular favourite was Hollie’s paying for a ticket on the Humber Bridge. Imagine if that was you in the car behind. How happy would you be if someone did that for you? What a lovely thought.
I’ll leave this here with a simple quote that I hope you all enjoy – feel free to pin it for another day too!
What could you do today, on World Smile Day to make someone smile? Perhaps you have already. Let me know in the comments.
Many thanks to all of the bloggers that contributed to this post.linky badge-2