Dear friend,

A simple thing to improve your life in all shapes and forms: smile!

Why smile?

Well, maybe a better question is

Why not smile?

It’s awesome to be alive. Not everyone was given the lucky privilege of being born. We didn’t ask to be born, but we’re alive and here. So the question is,

What are you going to do with your life?

For myself, I choose to smile. To smile is to show gratitude of being alive. To smile means to open up your heart to others. To smile is free and costs you nothing, yet reaps 1000x rewards. You brighten the day of others, and you also brighten your own day/life!

If you want to be a better photographer, smile more. Chat more with strangers, and smile at them! Ask them about their life, and ask them to make photos of them.

If you’re shooting “candid” street photography without permission, after taking a photo of someone, smile at them! It will warm up your heart, their heart, and it will feel less awkward for both parties involved (less awkward for both you and them).

To smile also means to laugh, and to engage with others. It’s showing a positive outlook and optimistic view on life.

To me, it is of course important to know about injustice, pain, and suffering in the world. Yet, in spite of all that, we must stay positive, and seek to “be the change which we wish to see in the world” (Gandhi). We don’t have the power to change everything in the world, but if we concentrate our energy and focus, we can make a big impact in a small part of society.

In life, you have the option to smile or frown. When shit hits the fan, take a Stoic approach. Laugh it off, and make fun of yourself.

And take the ultimate philosophical approach: smile.




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