A girl walks into a nail salon. It’s early summer and the front door is open to let the cool breeze in.
This girl stands on the threshold facing into the salon and announces, in a very loud voice, “I need my gels removed.”
The entire salon stops and turns toward her, not really sure of what was happening and what, perhaps, came along with this bellowing disclosure.
The girl just stands there, waiting for a response.
The salon owner says, “OK,” and “come in.”
“I need my gels removed,” she repeats loudly.
The salon owner says, “OK,” and “have a seat,” gesturing to where she should sit.
And this is the end of the story. There, obviously, isn’t any punch line because it’s not that kind of joke. In fact, it’s no joke at all. No one was smiling.
“I’ve never seen anything like this before,” said the woman sitting next to me at the manicure table. “She just walks in the door and barks orders. How can anybody be so unaware?”
Another woman, who was sitting close by chimed an agreement, “So rude!”
And a third woman said, “These kids think they’re the center of the world.”
Three women, each with a different take on the girl. One said she was unaware. One said she was rude. And, one said she was self-important. Everyone has a mix of judgments, beliefs and expectations on a variety of topics and subjects. When something gets our attention, we focus on it and our opinions come to the forefront.
But what if the women in the nail salon saw things differently? What if they saw the girl as excited, enthusiastic and joyful – looking forward to a fresh manicure? Attributes assigned to the girl, then, would be more associated with feelings of happiness, cheer and delight. She would be “fun,” not “rude” and she would be “happy,” not “demanding.”
We all have the power to react to our environment and situations based on perceptions that we decide, positive points of view that we cultivate and expectations that we shift from the dark into the light. If we seek a higher vibration energetically in all our encounters, we will receive, and therefore impart, more positive and happy reactions and results.
Instead of going home from the nail salon and telling the story of a rude girl who just walked in and blurted out demands, the story could go this way: “The cutest girl walked into the nail salon today. I’ve never seen anyone more excited to get a manicure. Her enthusiasm was uplifting.”
Looking on the bright side is a deliberate action we can all take. It is a purposeful, positive stance that can influence and affect everyone around us. Choosing to be this way may not align with everyone around you, but not being understood or liked by some is a small price to pay for unconditional uplift.
I wish I perked up that day and said to the three women, “Look how excited she is. I love her spirit!” But I didn’t. I judged them as they judged the girl. We’re not perfect. We all miss moments in life when we could have done more. Done better. Done something over nothing. It has really bothered me since that day, which is why I’m talking about this now. I’m annoyed with myself with not trying to lift the mood and help shift the spirit to a happier and more positive place.
Consider this, therefore, my ‘confession’. It’s not the typical confession that admits guilt or asks for forgiveness, as in a religious practice. I’m not confessing here out of shame or embarrassment. I am confessing that I could have done better. I’m confessing that I learned something about myself that day – that sometimes I can, and should, involve myself more and share my thoughts, in the moment. I tend to be introspective. I think about things for a while – swirl them around and only allow my feelings to emerge after I’ve contemplated the entire situation. Sometimes we can’t go back and fix things. But, if we choose to see things differently – see things with the most positive perspective – then we will be able to trust ourselves in the moment to get involved and speak our minds.
I’m going to the nail salon next week to try again. And, if a young, enthusiastic girl walks in and wants her gels removed, I’ll know just what to say.