First 30 Days Blog

20 may

A Smile a Day, Paved The Way

JoAnnaBoccardAs a child I was told I was shy, so I assumed this must be a problem since I was continually reminded of this flaw. I grew up with a father who believed there were no strangers, that everyone is your friend. I watched him as he waved or spoke to everyone whether he knew them or not. To be like my father seemed difficult and scarey for me, but if he could do it, so could I.


I decided to put myself into a situation in which I was surrounded by strangers, a busy downtown street. Then I walked among these strangers holding my head high and looking into their eyes as they passed me on the street. After I succeeded at this and found that no one would hurt or even scare me, I added on a smile. The earth shattering part faded and after practice it became easy and natural. In my mind I assured myself that I would be safe, that this wasn’t so hard. I then realized that this was fun, genuinely fun.


How was I to ever understand myself if I couldn’t communicate with others? How could I fulfill my dreams if I was too afraid to look beyond my own two feet? By taking control of this area of my life I knew I could do anything I wanted. From this exercise in courage, I received the confidence to speak up, to ask for what I want, to stand up for myself, to do things that without this courage would have remained impossible dreams.


I took command of my life. I took back my power. I changed this part of my life, by changing how I believed, how I perceived a stranger. Change your actions along with your thoughts. The combination is dynamite.


  • Choose something that you would like to do, or someone who does something that you would like to emulate. Those in our lives are there to teach us, we just have to notice and allow.
  • Decide how you can do this, how you can fit it into your life.
  • Then practice. New habits can only be formed if they are repeated and become part of your daily regimen.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by JoAnna Boccard on May 20th, 2010 in Uncategorized | 5 comments

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  • Thank you so much for sharing this. I am not shy, but have other things to work on. Your story is very inspirational. Thanks again.

    — Added by Beatty500 on May 23rd, 2010
  • I am basically shy even now that I am middle aged. It seems to me that people dont like me because I am too quiet. Its nice to know that I am not the only one who experiences shyness.

    — Added by deceivedbyemployer on May 25th, 2010
  • Thanks for sharing – your story reminded me I am more shy/cautious towards strangers that I would like to be. Ill practice more :)

    MA from Athens, Greece

    — Added by Mariangela on May 27th, 2010
  • Thank you for sharing this. It reminds me of when I heard a small inner voice telling I was a joy spreader one day and began smiling at people wherever I went. I had to feel the joy inside to be able to spread it, and I noticed it lifted everyones energy — especially mine! Keep smiling!

    — Added by barbschiffman on May 30th, 2010
  • Even good things doing daily becomes a heavy load to execute. Forget the post, I salute you for reading all those emails on a trunkey basis. Take care, be slow, and last longer…lol.

    — Added by esskay on June 4th, 2010

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