The Hidden Power of Your Smile

There isn't a person in this world who doesn't enjoy a genuine smile.

It's a wonderful way to show someone that you're friendly, that you like them, that you agree with them, and that you understand them.

A smile is a key to your soul, and can be the key to someone else's. It can make or break relationships, has the power to settle disputes, and is a prerequisite for attraction. A genuine smile can change the world.

When was the last time you genuinely smiled at someone?

For many of us, we smile all of the time. We let the happiness of the moment seep into our lives, and allow the love to flow back out.

Yet others are trapped in the stresses and insecurities of their minds, never to let the happiness in. This detachment from the world around us eventually creates the frowns and angered faces we see.

 

THE SCIENCE BEHIND A SMILE 

Just as the mind affects the body, the body affects the mind.

Our brains take in signals from our bodies, to tell us how we should feel. When we smile our brain tells us that we're happy, which in turn increases our happiness.

The same goes for the reverse.

Smiling releases neuropeptides to fight stress1, and sends dopamine, serotonin and endorphins to boost our mood2.

It also affects the people around us.

For one, smiling is like yawning. It's contagious3. When you show someone a great big smile, they're prone to give you one back.

This unmistakably helps boost the other person's perception of you, which helps build the relationship and increases your attractiveness4.

Yes believe it or not fellas, looking tough isn't what will attract that pretty girl. But rather, it's your smile.

Along with boosting someone's perception of you, a genuine smile will increase your trustworthiness5. This is a prerequisite for friendships, long-lasting relationships, and leadership.

 

YOUR CHALLENGE FOR THE DAY 

1. Start and end every conversation with a smile.

2. Smile at that pretty girl or guy. For an added challenge, go introduce yourself with a big smile.

3. Give every cashier, waiter, and customer service attendant a genuine smile of appreciation as you leave.

Notice as your interactions become more pleasant and your happiness begins to grow.

 

 

Footnotes

1. Seaward BL. Managing Stress: Principles and Strategies for Health and Well-Being. Sudbury, Mass.: Jones and Bartlett; 2009:258

2. R.D. (2000). Neural correlates of conscious emotional experience. In R.D. Lane & L. Nadel (Eds.), Cognitive neuroscience of emotion (pp. 345–370). New York: Oxford University Press.

3. Primitive emotional contagion. Hatfield, Elaine; Cacioppo, John T.; Rapson, Richard L. Clark, Margaret S. (Ed), (1992). Emotion and social behavior. Review of personality and social psychology, Vol. 14., (pp. 151-177). Thousand Oaks, CA, US: Sage Publications, Inc, xi, 311 pp.

4. R.D. (2000). Neural correlates of conscious emotional experience. In R.D. Lane & L. Nadel (Eds.), Cognitive neuroscience of emotion (pp. 345–370). New York: Oxford University Press.

5. Schmidt, K. "Intensity of Smiling and Attractiveness as Facial Signals of Trustworthiness in Women." National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine.