4 Reasons to Smile
The man who created the iconic yellow first smiley face in 1963 started World Smile Day, held on the first Friday of October each year. He stated he became concerned about the over-commercialization of the symbol, and how its original meaning and intent had become lost in the constant repetition of the marketplace. He thought that we, all of us, should devote one day each year to smiles and kind acts throughout the world. The smiley face knows no politics, no geography and no religion. Harvey’s idea was that for at least one day each year, neither should we. This year, The Psych Professionals, are making a concentrated effort to change the world today and to impact as many peoples lives as possible. Today we want you to smile.
Smiling helps you to relax
Smiling can actually work to help change our brains though patterns, working to disrupt the ruminative automatic thoughts and create new pathways with positive thoughts.
We are naturally drawn to people who smile and in the opposite, negative facial expressions like frowns and scowls push people away. When we are feeling down, our face tends to replicate this. People then avoid us, which increases our feelings of isolation and loneliness. By smiling at others, we can draw people to us and can start to increase our connectedness to others.
They are contagious!
It is actually scientifically proven that smiling is contagious! Once we smile, we trigger an automatic response in others, which causes them to smile as well. If someone directs a genuine smile at us, we are likely to return that smile – try it out!
Smiling Makes Us Feel Good
Smiling can actually work to make us feel better. The simple act of changing how our face looks can work to release neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine – the feel good messengers!
A study was completed to compare the difference between smiling with mouth alone (a standard smile), compared to a smile which involved your eyes (a genuine smile) and the results were significant. In short – smile with your eyes to get the maximum benefit. If you can’t manage this though, the study still showed benefits of a standard smile alone. So even if you can’t summon the positivity for a genuine smile, fake it till you make it!
If these reasons aren’t good enough for you, then all you need to do is a quick look on the internet to find so many more that are equally as important. We encourage you to try smiling today (regardless how you are feeling) and to take notice of those around you and their reaction to your smile. Notice how you feel when you smile, how your mind focuses on the smile and the reason you’re smiling, rather than all the negative things going on. Just take today to give yourself a break and let yourself be unconditionally happy – not because you have a reason to be, but because you can.
If you are struggling with your emotions, or have trouble to find reasons to smile, contact us today to learn how we can support you to live a happier life.