I love to people watch, as do most of us I think. During a recent trip to Long Beach California, my husband and I were taking a breather in the shade. I was checking out this lady who was facing the other way talking on her phone. Her long hair covered her face but she looked like she’d stepped straight off of Rodeo Drive. She was slim, very tanned and dressed in a simple classic way that looked very expensive. She wore a white vest top and tailored shorts that showed off just the right amount of bum cheek. The look was finished with gold flip flops and matching bag. Her hair was styled in corkscrew curls with a sunkissed look. She had clearly been styled at a top salon and looked exquisite. I commented to my husband about how image was so important in LA.
I was at the opposite end of the spectrum. Here I was sitting on a rocking chair wearing a big floppy sun hat from Primark, sunglasses from the Dollar Tree, a dress that I’d bought from a car boot for £2 and modified, and flip-flops from Wal-Mart. My total outfit cost less than £10!
As she walked past, she gave me a huge smile and told me I looked beautiful! Like most women, I have body confidence issues and I was stunned! Why would someone who looked like that say that to someone who looked like me? I stuttered a thank you but could not return the compliment to someone who I thought looked amazing. Needless to say, she made my day and even writing this I can feel how good she made me feel about myself.
During our trip, I got complimented many times by random strangers. They loved my hair and all the dresses I wore. I was told I looked “cool”, “cute” and “just the part”. Americans boosted my confidence tremendously. I, on the other hand, saw a girl with lovely dark skin wearing a vivid red dress that looked stunning, many nice hairdos, pretty dresses, and great bodies in abundance. As much as I’d have loved to say “you look great” and maybe make someone’s day, I wasn’t comfortable doing that.
I can easily and genuinely compliment people that I know but I can’t bring myself to compliment a stranger. Is it a British thing? Could you compliment a random stranger?
Today is World Smile Day. Today I’m going to go out of my comfort zone and tell someone they look great. Will you join me in boosting someone’s confidence?
I will be sharing more random acts of kindness during Blogtober. In the meantime you might like to read:
Or check out my entire month’s Blogtober schedule and find out what other bloggers are taking part.
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