Smiling comes naturally to us and is by far the most universal expression of all time! When we’re feeling good, or when someone has cracked a silly joke, our human instinct is to smile.
Besides, smiling is super contagious. It’s almost impossible to keep a straight face when looking at someone who’s smiling! So let’s send some positive vibes your way by sharing the many benefits that a smile can bring.
Why is a smile so powerful?
Never underestimate the power of a smile. It has many physiological and psychological benefits that can transform your life in an instant! Smiling can help you stay optimistic, healthy, and increase your lifespan. You could also be perceived as more attractive and intelligent when you’re grinning from ear to ear!
Powerful facts about smiling
1. Smiling lifts your mood
To boost your mood in an instant, just smile! Your body releases feel-good hormones such as dopamine and serotonin which can improve your day significantly. In fact, the act of smiling can activate pathways in your brain that have a positive impact on your emotional state. Essentially, that’s ‘tricking’ your mind into believing that you’re happy.
Moreover, research has shown that just posing our muscles in a smile can improve our mood. In a study to determine whether facial expressions influence our emotional experience, researchers found that posed smiles can, in fact, make us happier. So incorporate these smile hacks into your day to beam the blues away.
“A smile is the universal welcome.” – Max Eastman
2. Smiling helps you manage pain and stress
In addition to psychological benefits, there are healthy perks to grinning wide. If you’re anxious about how painful that Covid booster shot will be, remember that a smile can reduce the sensation of pain! Plus, smiling is a great way to reduce stress even if you don’t feel like smiling.
A study was done where research participants’ stress levels were measured while performing difficult tasks. Heart rates of the participants in the broad-smiling group recovered the most quickly, compared to those in the neutral expression group. So that’s a scientifically-proven tip to encourage you to smile even in stressful situations!
For keeping that smile healthy, incorporate good oral health habits into your daily routine like flossing and brushing.
3. Boost your social image with a smile
A smile can truly bring life changing benefits, including improving the way you are perceived by the people around you. Did you know that smiling more can make other people think you’re more intelligent? Researchers found a correlation between smiling and how intelligent someone is.
For instance, participants that were perceived as being highly intelligent appeared to be smiling more than those who were thought to have lower levels of intelligence. Moreover, the simple act of smiling has psychological benefits like boosting your confidence and making you feel more optimistic about life. Isn’t there anything a smile can’t do?
The types of smiles and what they mean
We smile in almost every social situation – whether you’re having a heartfelt conversation with your best friend, or even when you’re meeting that business client for the first time. However, did you know that we use different types of smiles in different situations?
Reward smiles are smiles of joy and happiness. Mostly associated with positive feelings, these are called reward smiles because we use them as a way to motivate ourselves or other people.
These are often used as social cues to express politeness or reassurance. Affiliative smiles are also used to communicate trustworthiness and good intentions in social situations.
As the name suggests, dominance smiles can communicate anger or contempt, such as a sneer. We would also argue that a creepy smile counts as a smile of dominance. We don’t recommend them (unless absolutely necessary) because nobody wants to feel uncomfortable!
As the smile we can all aspire to, Duchenne smiles convey trustworthiness, authenticity and friendliness. It’s the one where your entire face lights up in a display of genuine enjoyment and pure joy!
“Nothing you wear is more important than your smile.” – Connie Stevens
Power up with a smile
So now that we’ve shared all the powerful benefits a smile can bring, it’s your turn to Smile More! At Zenyum, we want to help you achieve that perfect smile so you can beam confidently at anyone (or even yourself) every day.