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Annie Payson Call (author)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 164 pages of information about Nerves and Common Sense.

Some people are so far out of the normal way of eating that they have lost a wholesome sense of what is good for them, and live in a chronic state of disordered stomach, which means a chronic state of disordered nerves and disposition.  If such persons could for one minute literally experience the freedom of a woman whose body was truly and thoroughly nourished, the contrast from the abnormal to the normal would make them dizzy.  If, however, they stayed in the normal place long enough to get over the dizziness, the freedom of health would be so great a delight that food that was not nourishing would be nauseous to them.

Most of us are near enough the normal to know the food that is best for us, through experience of suffering from food which is not best for us, as well as through good natural instinct.

If we would learn from the normal working of the involuntary action of our organs, it might help us greatly toward working more wholesomely in all our voluntary actions.

If every woman who reads this article would study not to interfere with the most healthy action of her own stomach, her reward after a few weeks’ persistent care would be not only a greater power for work, but a greater power for good, healthy, recuperative rest.

CHAPTER XVIII

About Faces

WATCH the faces as you walk along the street!  If you get the habit of noticing, your observations will grow keener.  It is surprising to see how seldom we find a really quiet face.  I do not mean that there should be no lines in the face.  We are here in this world at school and we cannot have any real schooling unless we have real experiences.  We cannot have real experiences without suffering, and suffering which comes from the discipline of life and results in character leaves lines in our faces.  It is the lines made by unnecessary strain to which I refer.

Strange to say the unquiet faces come mostly from shallow feeling.  Usually the deeper the feeling the less strain there is on the face.  A face may look troubled, it may be full of pain, without a touch of that strain which comes from shallow worry or excitement.

The strained expression takes character out of the face, it weakens it, and certainly it detracts greatly from whatever natural beauty there may have been to begin with.  The expression which comes from pain or any suffering well borne gives character to the face and adds to its real beauty as well as its strength.

To remove the strained expression we must remove the strain behind; therefore the hardest work we have to do is below the surface.  The surface work is comparatively easy.

I know a woman whose face is quiet and placid.  The lines are really beautiful, but they are always the same.  This woman used to watch herself in the glass until she had her face as quiet and free from lines as she could get it—­she used even to arrange the corners of her mouth with her fingers until they had just the right droop.

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