‘WE ARE HIRING …SMILEY FACES!’
I saw this sign today in the grocery store. Ugh, They only want smiley people.
My face has not been in a very smiley mood lately so I wouldn’t be a good candidate for this job.
Funny but why aren’t sad faced people valued?
I mean don’t sad or non-smiley people have stuff to offer the world too?
I think they do!
Sometimes people who smile too much make me nervous honestly. I think of used car salesmen. May weee help yuuuu?
God no. I normally buy from a less smiley person honestly.
Maybe there is a balance between too smiley and too depressed?
I don’t think that a sign that read:
‘Depressed Gloomy-Faced People wanted!!
would work too well.
But what about you? Do you have days when you do decent work or even great work when you’re not in the most smiley mood?
It’s an interesting question.
‘Turn that frown upside down?’
I was told back in my teen years by some school counselor that in order to develop a good mood you should try smiling. She said PURPOSELY putting a smile on your face will improve your mood!
JUST TRY IT… I was told.
Turn that frown upside down. EH. How cliche…
I found this article about the benefits of smiling from the Huffington Post titled: Surprising Reasons You Should Smile Every Day by Alena Hall
It might actually have changed my mind on this subject. Here are some highlights from that story:
1. Smiling can improve your mood.
By choosing to smile, happy changes start to occur automatically, both internally and externally.
Our facial expressions do more than communicate our current mood — they have the ability to influence our mood too! WOW. This is good to know.
Emotions may originate in the brain, but the muscles in the face either reinforce or transform those feelings.
Recent studies revealed that through the enhancement of positive emotions — or the suppression of negative ones — with facial expressions,
‘…a person’s mood begins to align more strongly with the emotion his or her face is communicating…’
I used to think FAKING a smile was just downright inauthentic!
I remember my mom used to tell me I was brooding a lot when I was young. Many people said to me ‘Just SMILE!”.
I hated that.
“NOO! Don’t tell me to what to do!! Who wants a phony inauthentic smile plastered on their face?” I would protest.
But the research shows that:
2. Even fake smiles do the trick.
A forced smile can still make you feel happy, even when your existing mood and surroundings suggest otherwise.
‘…It only takes smiling for a brief period of time to experience its benefits — no matter how contrived it feels initially. In this case, maybe it’s OK to fake it a little…’
3. Smiling helps reduce stress.
In a 2012 study published in the journal Psychological Science 170 participants were told to hold chopsticks in their mouths in three formations, making them smile to various degrees without realizing it, after performing a stressful task.
The experiment revealed that subjects who smiled the biggest with the chopsticks experienced a substantial reduction in heart rate and quicker stress recovery compared to those whose expressions remained neutral.
4. A smile makes you seem more trustworthy and more approachable.
Smiling employees came across as more likable and friendly, and customers left the interactions feeling more satisfied about their overall experience
From a psychological perspective, a person who is smiling appears more trustworthy than a person who is either frowning or holding a neutral expression.
In a University of Pittsburgh study, researchers explored the potential connection between a model’s level of attractiveness, the intensity of her smile and her perceived level of trustworthiness. They found that:
‘…the bigger the models smiled, the more trustworthy they seemed..’.
5. Smiling actually retrains your brain for the better.
While the brain is naturally inclined to think in negative terms as a defense mechanism, the habitual act of smiling helps the mind move to a more positive space and remain there longer the more you do it.
According to Shawn Achor, the author of The Happiness Advantage, by making smiling a part of our everyday practice, we help our brains create happiness loops that encourage more positive-thinking patterns.
6. Smiles are contagious.
“…When I see you smiling, my mirror neurons for smiling fire up, too, initiating a cascade of neural activity that evokes the feeling we typically associate with a smile…”
7. Smiles may strengthen the body on a cellular level.
Just as this happy facial expression helps rid the body of stress, smiling can release tension on a cellular level as well, according to biochemist and artist Sondra Barrett. In her book, Secrets of Your Cells.
Barrett explains how cells can distinguish between safety and danger, find and repair problems and create an overall sense of balance within the body.
A person’s thoughts have a direct effect on cell function.
‘…When we smile, we reduce the rigidness of our cells, and this physical relaxation can help combat the risk of stress-induced cell mutations that can lead to the development or persistence of various cancers…’
8. Smiling makes you more creative.
This same mood boost can get those creative juices flowing.
The studies found that those who were happier(smiled more?)had a more comprehensive approach to problems, improving their ability to think of more solutions than their negative-minded counterparts.
‘…The researchers connected this finding to the release of dopamine triggered by happiness’
9. Smiles are free!
So smiles are one of the few available mood boosters that are available to us each day at no cost whatsoever.
So why not take advantage of our own power to create happiness?
Ok. Ok. I think I will try out this theory more often in my own life. It can’t hurt to try it eh?
How bout YOU?
Do you believe smiling can necessarily transform your bad mood?
Id love to hear from you! HAPPY SMILEY WEEKEND!