Those two words always bring my thoughts to a halt. It usually means that I have made some inter-generational, cultural faux-pas and that there is a ‘lesson’ coming my way. It makes me smile, because I am a big fan of pausing, being awoken from my reverie of thoughts, being made aware of my need to learn something new. It makes me smile, because I know that I will walk away from this conversation with a new perspective on something that I thought I understood very well.
And all that smiling momentarily “lightens” my mental load, puts me in a better frame of mind. A “lighter” mental load can lead to better clarity, and better clarity can lead to creativity and innovation. What wonderful mental benefits to lightening our mental load, don’t you agree? However, the benefits aren’t just in our mind. There is the old adage that “we exercise a lot more muscles to frown than to smile”, and hence it is good for us to smile more. Or is it the other way round? Some scientists are doing more research! But, it doesn’t matter. Either way, my hypothesis is that those smiles, which lighten our burdens, are always a better idea than frowning. And I intend to prove it to you…
I don’t know if science can precisely quantify the effect that outward smiling has on our inner being. It is perhaps hard to genuinely smile, that deep smile of joy and contentment, without affecting our heart and spirit in a positive way. Every genuine expression of joy will relieve a little bit of our inner stress, help us shed some of the “burdens” that we carry around. Every genuine act of giving, of helping will help us lighten our “load”, and propel us higher on our journey. Every random act of kindness, particularly one that makes the other person smile, tends to make us smile too, doesn’t it? But wait, there is more.
It is when we smile, that we invite others to smile with us. It is a gentle way of injecting a sense of humor into a life situation. It is when we have a sense of humor, a lightness of being, that we attain great power of heart, body, mind and spirit. Where does this great power come from? Here is a quote that I recently read, that says it best:
“Our sense of humor, our lightness of being, gives us the armor which protects us from being humiliated. When we refuse to be humiliated, we become invincible” – Sri Sri Ravi Shankar Art of Stress-Free Living
So, there it is. Ample proof of our invincibility, if we choose a sense of humor and get in touch with the lighter side of our Spirituality. How will you use your sense of humor in the weeks to come?
P.S. If you are still not convinced about the value of “lightness”, cue up a clip of the MAVEN rocket launch. You will get the idea – no transition to “lightness”, no going into orbit 🙂 Join us for our weekly twitter chat Sunday, November 24th at 9amET in #SpiritChat for more lightness…