Jim’s Journal: I See the Smile but…

March 16, 2014 in Jim's Journal

We certainly know how to put on the good face.  If you ask someone how they’re doing, in most cases they will smile and give you the obligatory, “I’m fine.”  You can’t fool me, though.  I can see your smile on the outside and still feel your frown on the inside.  Some of us do a better job of hiding their stress than others, but it doesn’t last.  Everybody has a story to tell and many of the stories I’ve been hearing lately, once the person I’m talking to comes clean, are filled with pain and frustration.  I get it!  Stuff happens.  If I start naming the kinds of things that happen to us on a daily basis I wouldn’t finish this journal entry until March Madness was over.  In case you’re wondering what’s the “why” behind this journal, here it is.  Check in with your friends, colleagues and family members more often.  When they give you their routine, “I’m fine,” ask them what they mean.  Ask them to define “fine.”  Probe a little more.  Tell them that you’re there for them.  People aren’t going to purge (all of their pain) immediately so you have to be very purposeful and patient.  So many of us have learned to live with pain and we have convinced ourselves that this is the way our life is supposed to be.  WRONG!!!!  Let’s form a “Get Beyond the Smile” team and help others deal more effectively with their misfortunes.  Are you in?

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