6 Good Reasons Why You Should Smile
When Do We Smile
Smiling is something we do naturally when we are happy - imagine seeing a loved one that you hadn't seem for some time the natural response would be to smile, if you hear good news, you would smile and of course babies and children smile frequently in response to a range of stimuli. We all prefer a smiling face to a sad one - that's why so many adverts use smiling faces and why we all get folk to smile for photographs.
But increasingly it is becoming apparent that smiling has all sorts of physical and emotional benefits for us - so it is definitely something we should do more - even at those times when we may not feel like it.
It's Good For Your Health
There is evidence to suggest that smiling lowers our blood pressure, making us less susceptible to heart disease. What is perhaps more surprising is that this seems to be true even when the smile is fake! http://www.cbsnews.com/news/even-a-fake-grin-may-help-lower-heart-rate-in-stressful-situations/
Smiling can also boost the immune system (which helps us fight disease and infection) and increase our energy levels http://www.helpguide.org/articles/emotional-health/laughter-is-the-best-medicine.htm
There is even evidence to suggest that people who are happy, experience more positive emotions and smile a lot live longer than those who don't. http://science.howstuffworks.com/life/happy-people-live-longer1.htm
It Will Make You Happier
Obviously we smile when we are happy but there is now evidence to suggest that if we smile, even if we don't feel like it then it will help us to feel happier. So not only does our face express our emotions but the emotions we express on our face can actually change what we are feeling. The same is true in reverse, frowning a lot may well make you feel more miserable.
So smiling in effect gives a message to our brain that we are happy - and then we 'feel' happier. So even if we start out with a fake smile the chances are it will have a good effect on us. We've probably all had the experience of feeling a bit fed up about something and then having a good old laugh and finding that maybe things don't seem so bad.https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cutting-edge-leadership/201206/there-s-magic-in-your-smile
It Will Make You Look More Attractive
It Will Make You More Attractive
It's no surprise really that smiling is generally regarded as attractive - that's something we could all figure out. Smiling is how we greet people, show approval and express happiness. It is a powerful social signal and although there may be several different types of smile studies suggest that smiling is something that increases attractiveness. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12459213
It's worth stopping for a moment and just thinking of how you respond to people who smile as against those who don't. When you are served in a shop or restaurant you will probably respond more positively to someone who smiles and in terms of looking for a mate, smiling will probably be an effective tool!
It Improves Mood and Reduces Stress
There are a few different aspects to this. First research seems to suggest that if you can smile when you are experiencing stress or difficulties the 'problems' won't seem so bad http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/248433.php
Secondly research has identified two different types of smile the 'polite' smile that professionals like air stewardesses may use where the muscles around the mouth are used and a sincere or genuine smile where the muscles around the eyes are also used. The good news is that all types of smiles seem to have a beneficial impact on blood pressure and stress.
When we smile, whether it is genuine or not it causes the brain to release endorphins which means that our mood changes and we feel better.
So you will feel better if you smile and it will be beneficial for you as well.
It will Improve Your Mood
It's very easy to blame our surroundings, situations or other people for our bad mood or stress but actually we are all responsible for own happiness. That doesn't mean our moods aren't shaped by our experiences but we can make a conscious decision to smile whatever our circumstances and it will help our mood. BUT it is also contagious - so it will help others too. Something quite wonderful happens when you smile, especially when you are surrounded by people who aren't smiling.
It seems that when we smile others quite literally smile with us a friend or someone nearby is 25% more likely to become happy themselves. The thing is smiling is a universal message so next time you come across someone who doesn't look happy, a salesperson or someone that you might interact with try smiling and see what happens. In my experience a smile at the beginning of an interaction can change the whole interaction - it gives a message that other humans respond to.
It Will Help You Get Promoted
That is not to say that someone incompetent who goes around grinning like a Cheshire cat will get that coveted top job, but research suggests that workers who smile are more likely to viewed in a positive light by the boss. Not surprising really we've seen that its good for us and most bosses would like to think that you enjoy your job.http://thetablet.org/smiling-may-reduce-stress-improve-mood-2/
Perhaps bosses recognise that a smiling workforce will be more likely to get the job done and encourage others to do the same.
So smiling is good for you! It's good for you physically and it's good for you emotionally. Even in difficult situations, you may not change the situation but smiling will improve your mood and help you look at things in a different light.
It's nothing new either - lots of songs have been around for ages extolling the virtues of smiling. In smile by Nat King Cole one line reads "You'll find that life is still worthwhile if you just smile". There was Marvin Gaye who sang "the shadow of your smile when you are gone will colour all my dreams and light the dawn" and more recently Lily Allen sang "At first I feel bad for a while but then I just smile".
So what are you waiting for - slap on a smile - after all you aren't fully dressed without one!