Some days you simply don’t feel like smiling. Nothing is going your way, and there seems to be nothing you can do to change the situation. It’s a bad day. But smiling when you feel down isn’t impossible, and even a fake smile can lift your mood. Read on to learn more reasons to smile, no matter how you feel:
Smiling improves your mood
Our facial expressions do more than communicate our mood; they can influence our mood as well. Studies have shown that when a person expresses positive or negative emotions on their face, their mood begins to align with those emotions.
Even fake smiles make you happier
Research has indicated that a forced smile can make you feel happier, even when your true mood suggests otherwise. It only takes smiling for a brief period to experience the benefits, even if the smile is completely inauthentic.
Smiling helps reduce stress
In a 2012 study, 170 participants were asked to hold chopsticks in their moths in three formations, making them smile to various degrees without realizing, straight after performing a stressful task. The participants who smiled the biggest with the chopsticks experienced a substantial reduction in heart rate and recovered from the stressor earlier than those whose expressions remained relatively neutral.
Smiling makes you more approachable
One study found that authentic smiles shared by employees in service industries made a more positive impression on customers than employees who didn’t smile. The customers rated the smiling employees as more likable, friendly and competent at their jobs.
Smiling makes you seem more trustworthy
In one study, participants rated 45 models on the intensity of her smile, and her perceived level of trustworthiness. The bigger the models smiled, the more trustworthy they appeared to the participants.
Smiling retrains your brain
The brain is actually naturally inclined to think negatively, as a defense mechanism. But the act of smiling regularly can help the mind move to a more positive space, and remains their longer the more often you smile.
This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Joint Corp (or its franchisees and affiliates). You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.