Husband and father of four, Benjamin Holmgren is not a big Facebook user. He prefers to post his motivational phrases and posts on Linkedin or Instagram. But when it came to a topic important to him, he chose to log into his neglected Facebook account.
Then, he created a post about how the way a person comes inside the home can influence their relationships and their lives.
“When you get home to your spouse/kids/dog, etc., before you open the door, put a smile on your face!
It doesn’t matter how your day went. Or what you’re doing next. Or if you’re starving.
For 30 seconds, at least pretend that you’re elated to see them. Make them feel like you were looking forward to getting back home.
After all, they’re your favorite people in the whole world. I hope.”
Holmgren, who is 25 years old, acknowledges the act of smiling as you walk through the door of your home at the end of the workday may seem small. But he insists the gesture sets the tone of the household for the rest of the evening.
“So really, it’s not tiny at all.
It’s a huge deal.
Because you come home every day.
And the things you do every day grind on you.”
He ended his post with this reality check.
“Taking your family to Disneyland is insignificant.
Your kid’s expensive birthday party will be forgotten within weeks.
Coming home? That’s your whole life.
Fix it. Start today.”
The post got him 151,000 likes and 25,000 comments.
Holmgren lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, with his wife, Leiah, and their four children, ages 5, 4, 2, and 1, and is a positive person who knows the power of gratitude.
He told Today,
“I married young, I love my wife to death, we have four beautiful children, we have nothing to complain about.
But life is hard. We see how much we have been spared, but if and when that loss or pain does come, we want to be as prepared as possible for it.”
He gives credit for the idea to University of Houston research professor and bestselling author Brené Brown. Brown wrote about this in a blog post called “What Toni Morrison Taught Me About Parenting.” where she credited beloved author Toni Morrison.
Morrison was a big believer in letting the love you have for your children show in your face when you see them. It may not seem important, but a smile from you after a busy day can make their whole evening.
Holmgren hopes his post helped spread Morrison’s wise advise further, because he believes in it and in our ability to handle our stress and problems.
And, because this simple act of smiling at the people we love works.