Yes, it’s Monday morning. What if I told you the best thing you can do for yourself, and others, is to SMILE?
Here’s 5 amazing things you may not know about your smile:
1/. Scientific research shows that smiling affects your mood. The mind and body are interconnected. MRIs show that when you smile, a part of your brain lights up. The body responds to your smile by producing oxytocin, dopamine and other ‘feel good’ chemicals.
2/. Research also shows that even a fake smile (one you do physically even when you don’t feel happy) results in your body being tricked into producing oxytocin, a naturally occurring ‘feel good’ chemical. This chemical goes straight to your brain, increasing your mood. The oxytocin release happens before your brain can tell it was tricked! So it might be Monday morning, and you might not feel like it, but smile anyway and you will feel better!
3/. Smiling can make you smarter. Well, in part anyway. We know that when we smile, the brain releases dopamine, which is known to raise your level of pleasure. It also has a second function – it turns on all the learning centres in your brain. You can dramatically improve your intellectual resources, energy, creativity and productivity by increasing the amount of dopamine in your system … and we know now where that comes from!
4/. If someone sees your smile, you will trick their brains into feeling good too! Psychologists know that emotional states are literally contagious. Humans have ‘mirror neurons’ in their brain. Explained simply, if you smile when having a brain scan, part of the brain lights up. If someone else smiles at you, and you see it in your visual field, the brain scan will show that another part of your brain lights up. In both cases, however, the message to the brain is the same – ‘you are smiling’ – and here we go again, all those ‘feel good’ chemicals flood into your system. Incidentally, those ‘mirror neurons’ also explain why yawning seems contagious!
5/. The smile is humanity’s universal language. The smile exists in every culture, every nationality and every part of the world. It means the same thing to everyone. It has the same effect on everyone … so go on smile and make the world a better place. Even if it is Monday.
Kris Reynolds is Partner at Let’s Talk Career, an executive coaching and career transition consultancy for professionals. www.letstalkcareer.com. She is an experienced Executive Coach, with a Masters Degree in Leadership from the University of Southern Queensland, and over 20 years senior Human Resource Management experience. She is a Fellow of the Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI) and a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF).
The newsletters, blog and articles on this website are offered only for general informational and educational purposes. They are not offered as (and do not constitute) legal advice or legal opinions, nor individual advice. You should not act or rely on any information contained in
this website without first seeking further advice.
We would be delighted for you to print, share or copy this article, however we request that the author, author’s bio, company and company website remain intact should you do so. Copyright Let’s Talk Career 2013.