The countdown to the Lantern Festival that marks the end of the Chinese New Year celebrations has begun. On the eleventh day it is common for families to invite their son-in-laws and daughters to eat and finish the feasts leftovers from the many celebrations. It’s also known as a ‘break day’ so everyone: relax 🙂
Today while I was at work having a crisis with the reception’s booking system a guy came in with a DSLR camera kitted out with a microphone and looking like a ‘man on a mission’. This mission turned out to be that he was hosting a charity event for Syrian refugees in Greece and this event will be ‘Take Me Out’. He was recording a few clips for a friend about his time at the gym. He asked me to record a short piece for him, which I did, and realised that in return I could ask for him to participate in my little project too. I don’t believe in coincidences even though it feels pretty serendipitous that I had no one chosen for my red envelope today and there appears a guy perfect for the job.
To give you a bit of background, his name is Nico and he studies Industrial Economics at Nottingham University. In the few minutes that we chatted I learnt that he went to Greece over the Christmas break and helped give the Syrian immigrants basic supplies to survive. From that, he works for a charity that is supporting the refugees, thus this ‘Take Me Out’ event was created. When I explained my ‘red envelope’ project he was happy to take part and the advice he came up with was:
Be positive & smile
Nico explained that if you’re positive and smiley, when you run into people you know or you don’t, the positivity is addictive and it makes everyone’s day. It is never going to have a negative impact to just smile and have a positive attitude. I can definitely say that there is a difference in my day depending on whether I’m smiling a lot or not. If I’m not, it’s easier to end up having an alright day rather than a good one. If I am smiling I find that, on the whole, I end the day a lot happier. Have you ever found that someone can change “that frown upside down” just by their energetic and smiley attitude? It is real magic. We can only ourselves choose how the day is going to go and seeing that life can already have its challenges and rather laborious moments, don’t we want to strive for a happier society rather than a frowny one ? Try it for a week. Smile at people in the street (which I do do and some reactions are priceless as it is unexpected), wake up and greet the day with a smile on your face, and in those awful moments, smile through it. Even though this sounds utterly bonkers I think you’d be quite surprised with the results. I think the best feature of anyone is a genuine smile. That’s what makes the world go round.