Why You Should Smile More

jan.5-300x200Recently, I’ve read two articles advocating smiling more and smiling more often.

Those articles come at a crucial time of the year. For people who work with people and counsel others, January is well known as a depressing time of the year. More people seem to deal with psychological issues early in the year than at any other time of the year.

What is it about smiling that will help you in almost every area of life?

First, smiling has amazing beneficial effects for your outlook and your mental health in general.

The physical act of smiling – – not just thinking happy thoughts without smiling – – releases hopeful chemicals in the brain in the same way that physical exercise releases serotonin and endorphins. The physical act of smiling does the same.

One article suggested that you put a pencil between your teeth in order to make yourself smile. While it appears rather silly, the author noted that it only seems silly because it really works.

Second, smiling helps you in your relationships with other people. We are all drawn to people who smile. Their smiling not only helps their own feelings, they also help the feelings of the people around them.

People like me who speak in public should go to great lengths to learn to smile at appropriate places as you seek to communicate. A smile from the speaker helps people to relax. We have known for years that laughter relieves tension in an audience or group of any kind. Apparently, smiling does the same.

Third, smiling helps people in business for the same reason as the previous point. We simply want to be around people who smile and appear to be happy, well adjusted people.

Finally,  people who smile set the tone for an office, a school, and a home. These are places where smiling can be a blessing to other people.

“A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength” (Proverbs 17:22).

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