The Power of the Smile

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Smiles are powerful! According to research done by the University of Missouri-Kansas City smiling can do several things.

  • Smiling can make you look younger. The perception of individuals smiling in photos was a younger age than their actual age when compared to individuals not smiling.
  • Smiling can make you look thinner. Maybe its the upturned edges of the smile that make you look lighter or maybe its the fact that all the muscles in your face lift up or maybe the downturned face of individuals gave the perception they were being weighted down by unhappiness.
  • Smiling elevates your mood and creates a sense of well-being. When you smile your brain releases endorphins that are natural pain relievers.
  • Smiling induces more pleasure in the brain more than chocolate. I know you don’t believe this. I don’t believe it either. But according to Ron Gutman, the author of Smile: The Astonishing Powers of a Simple Act, “British researchers found that one smile can generate the same level of brain stimulation as up to 2,000 bars of chocolate.” Where do I sign up for the next experiment? And what happened to the person who ate 2,000 bars of chocolate? So many questions!
  • Smiling makes you seem courteous, likable, and competent. Those first two qualities seem logical, but smiling makes you seem competent? Speculation: If you look sad or anxious, perhaps others wonder if you know what you are doing. So perhaps a simple smile might be a shortcut to business success.
  • Smiling is contagious. You who can light up a room if you enter smiling. If you like to help others and lift the spirits of everyone you see, just smile.

Smiling might be one of the most underutilized aspects of non-verbal communication in business. Let's tap into the free commodity and see what kind of change it brings.

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