Saturday, December 12, 2015

The Power of Smiling

This time of year, the movie Elf, starring Will Ferrell is a popular choice among those who wish to laugh at holiday silliness.  One of my favorite lines when he’s asked why he’s smiling, Elf replies ‘I like smiling; smiling’s my favorite.’

The power of a smile benefits the human body is so many ways, releasing positive energy throughout.  In turn, a smile even affects those around you because it’s contagious. Have you ever noticed when you start out the day in a good mood, this positive energy seems to follow throughout the day?  This can begin with a simple smile before getting out of bed or while preparing breakfast.

Research shows that a smile releases neurotransmitters that help to reduced stress, cause relaxation and reduce the heart rate and blood pressure.  The feel-good emotions that are created even act much like anti-depressants. 

A smile causes you to look different, in turn people treat you differently…better than when frowning.  You look more confident, reliable, happy, etc.  I have found when walking through the day with a smile, others smile back at me.  The treatment I’ve experienced while wearing a smile include more doors being held open, generosity, and people being genuinely sweet and reflective of my happy mood. 

I encourage everyone to walk thought the day with a smile and work hard during a negative experience to overcome the situation with this simple facial expression. 

Joyce Rode, MA

S. Stevenson (June 25, 2012) There’s magic in your smile. How smiling affects your brain. Psychology Today. Retrieved December 11, 2015.


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Kaplan Center for Health and Wellness
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