Isn’t it a nice, warm feeling when you smile at someone and they smile back? And isn’t it also really nice when someone smiles at you in a kind and friendly way? Don’t you appreciate the warmth and friendship with another soul that opens your heart and lifts your spirits?
Smiling is such a lovely thing – and there are lots and lots of good reasons why we all like it so much and why it’s so good for us.
Smiling is catching!
Smiling is like yawning in that it’s contagious. When you see someone smiling, it affects something in your brain that then makes you do it too.
You don’t need to learn how to do it
It’s interesting to note that smiling isn’t a learned response, but something that human beings do naturally – we don’t have to be taught to do it. Even babies that are born blind smile. Without ever having seen a smile that they can copy, they automatically smile!
Smiling makes you and other people feel better
It seems that we need to smile – and this reinforces all the interesting evidence and research on how beneficial it is for us to smile.
Smiling trains your brain to be more positive! When you smile, the muscles in your face send feedback to your brain that releases the feel-good chemicals such as dopamine and seratonin that make you feel more cheerful and positive. Your heart rate slows down so the actual cells of your body relax. In this way you feel more calm and relaxed and your immune system is healed and strengthened.
If you’re sick, find someone that will help you to smile and laugh – and you will feel the benefits at once!
It seems that even a fake smile helps! Experiments such as putting plastic devices into the mouth to produce artificial smiles have the same effect as a genuine smile in changing your brain chemistry to make you feel better.
In stressful situations such as traffic jams or when I feel overly anxious, I make myself smile by consciously lifting up the corners of my mouth and, at first, it feels ridiculously fake, but in a matter of seconds I can feel myself calming down and the forced smile turns into a real one! Try it – it’s like an easy magic trick that you can do anywhere to feel better.
Smile to calm down
And if you’re with other people who are feeling stressed, a gentle, warm smile will help them to feel more relaxed and to know that they’re not alone. They will copy your smile and you’ll be able to notice a subtle shift in the energy in the room.
Happy, productive, creative and successful
People who smile naturally and freely are generally more approachable, likeable and successful. This is because they look and feel happier, more confident and self-assured, which makes it easier for others to relate to them.
Your friendly smiles act as a precursor for reaching out to another person and to building oneness and ties of friendship. This contributes to an overall sense of kindness, unity, connectedness and well-being.
At home and at work
Smiling is a highly effective way to build trust in teams and organisations because it builds trust. Obviously you have to be ensure that you’re completely trustworthy to back this up, but warm, sincere smiling paves the way for genuine trust to develop.
It takes fewer muscles to smile than to frown so it’s easy and fun to do!
Smile at the soul who is serving you in any way, smile at your colleagues and at strangers – and if you’ve even been forgetting to smile at your children or your family, bathe them in the warmth of your smile too.
Let’s avail ourselves of this glorious expression and uplifting state of being as we interact and connect heart to heart and soul to soul with one another!