Start your week with a Smile

IMG_7210I have always been told I have a beautiful smile (and she smiles) or that I am always shining my 32 (well, it might be less now due to all the sweets) but smiling always brightens up my day.

Smiling happens without much thought. When you watch a friend do something silly or embarrassing, you smirk. When you tend to get away with something that you knew was wrong, you grin. And when you are recognized for your achievements, you beam. Smiling is a very natural response that shares our happiness with others.

But did you know that smiling also triggers activity in your brain? Yea, there’s a serious mind-body connection there, in your left frontal cortex to be exact, which is—not surprisingly—the area of your brain that registers happiness.

So how often do you smile in a day? Do you smile when you meet new people? Or when you see your friends? Around your co-workers? How about your significant other? Your face has 44 muscles in it that allow you make more than 5,000 different types of expressions, many of which are smiles.

Well, I will share you with you on seven reasons why smiling is good for you, your health and your social life and mine of course!

Some Smiling Tips

*Smiling can make you happy (even when you’re not).*
Remember that mind-body connection we were just talking about? Well, it turns out that the simple act of smiling sends a message to your brain that you’re happy. And when you’re happy, your body pumps out all kinds of feel-good endorphins. So the next time you feel sad or upset, try smiling. It just might make your body—and therefore you—feel better.

*Smiling can make others happy.* 
When you’re smilin’, the whole world smiles with you.” Ever heard that song, made famous by Louis Armstrong? Well, it’s true. Research has shown that smiling is contagious. Ever been around someone who just had something fantastic happen to him or her? Isn’t it almost impossible not to feel good, too? Studies show that something as simple as seeing a friend smile can activate the muscles in your face to make that same expression, without you even being aware that you are doing it. Crazy, right?

But remember that this, too, can be for better or for worse. You know the expression “misery loves company”? Frowns act just like smiles, just with a negative reaction, so choose to smile and watch the world smile back!311813_pc

*Smiling makes you more attractive.* 
Ever wonder why are we always asked to smile in photos? Because people usually look their best—and happiest—when smiling. So the next time you are about to ask someone on a date or being asked out for a date, smile. It’ll make them feel happier (see No. 2), and you’ll already be more attractive in his or her eyes!

*Smiling can help you de-stress.* 
The next time you’re stressed about work or realize that your favorite jeans feel a little snug, don’t freak out. Take a few deep breaths and smile! Smiling may help to reduce symptoms associated with anxiety. When that smile signals to your brain that you’re feeling happy (even though you’re not really feeling happy…yet), your body will usually slow its breathing and heart rate.

Reducing stress is so important for health, too, as it can lower blood pressure, improve digestion and regulate blood sugar. Note that this works during workouts, too! If you’re having a hard time getting through that last rep or getting those final 5 minutes in on the treadmill, smiling can do wonders!

*Smiling can help you land a job.* 
This right here has worked for me at so many interviews – if you’re about to go on a job interview, you may think that your appearance is just about wearing nice clothes. Wrong! You can’t just wear that suit; you have to wear it with a smile.

I use Photofeeler (https://www.photofeeler.com) which is a website that allows me to choose which profile picture to have so I am always giving the best first impression. And I find out that the smiling photo of me looks more welcoming and professional.

When observers saw the photos of smiling people, they were more likely to think that the person in the photo was likable, confident, conscientious and stable. Sound like traits most companies want in an employee, right? So the next time you’re dressing to impress, make sure to take that beautiful, natural smile with you!

*Smiling can lead to laughter.* 
Have Smile for Meyou ever laughed without smiling? It’s pretty impossible to do. And it is funny how a smile here and a smile there with friends can turn into a whole fit of hysterical laughter. Laughter also helps blood flow, lowers blood sugar levels, reduces stress and improves sleep. It may also raise the level of infection-fighting antibodies in the body, which helps boost your immune system. So the moral of this story is smile—and laugh—often!

*Smiling just feels good.* 
Have you ever found that smiling just feels good? Go ahead, smile now. Doesn’t it feel natural? Make you feel happy to be alive? It sure does beat the heck out of a frown.

So the next time you’re feeling down or out of sorts, try a smile. If you can’t find a reason to smile, pop in a funny DVD, read the Sunday comics or call a friend. Golly, you may be able to even read the word smile and feel better. Just like seeing someone else smile makes you smile, reading emotion verbs (like smile, grin, frown, etc.) can also activate specific facial muscles.

Isn’t it time you turn that frown upside down? Now say “SMILEEE!”

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady ©
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