I made a concerted effort to stop myself from smiling too often in order to build a more authoritative and respectable image when in reality, I smile much more often if left unchecked. The reasons are many fold, the first of which is the realization that I have grown to use it as a defense mechanism and the message it conveys is that of submissiveness. It is a weird characteristic that most immigrant will also develop, especially so when faced with some words or stories that we cannot understand. Laughing it off is less shameful than admitting that we do not understand I suppose.
Which is probably a completely different matter from the real issue at hand, but it somehow got twisted into the same thing. So smiling = giving up authority made it into the character I am molding and smiling = being beta somehow got reinforced with all the concept of “challenge” in the social pick up game we all play.
What I have been feeling recently is a general sense of happiness at everything I experience. A life without the need for superiority and competition led to one that focuses solely at building. Every interaction became an enjoyable thing and I think only of making all bounds strengthen. Mind you, I’ve probably also reduced greed to a minimum so that falling into a trap that causes angst is less likely and years of looking for fraud allows me to dismiss any interaction with negative behaviors I don’t like.Â The happiness became internal and it makes people react positively towards me. I really felt it when strangers on the street started saying hello to me, without me initiating anything except that constant big fat smile I half managed to hide. But this is different. I was happy about myself and I wasn’t trying to please people or get attention. That’s probably it, my happiness is not used to get anyone’s particular attention. It is for everyone.
This reminds me of another time when I was this innocent, my frosh year of university, before I became too cynical