In the land of facial expressions, the smile has to be queen. When someone smiles their whole face lights up and it's hard not to feel some of their elation. In reality it could be perceived as quite threatening, in that the teeth are bared, however it's the eyes that transform the expression into one of pure joy, or wry amusement. This is why one can smile with the eyes alone, 'smising' if you will, but those who smile without the eyes look slightly insane.
Smiling is a physical act, often a spontaneous reflex to a situation, but sometimes we have to consciously activate the expression, and in this case practice makes perfect. Nobody should feel like they have to pretend that they're OK, when they're not; wearing a fake mask of happiness whilst suffering on the inside.
This is just about cultivating a more smiley demeanor in the interest of improved wellbeing and uplifting those you come into contact with on a daily basis.
Here are five reasons why you should try to smile more.
Studies show that smiling can have a positive effect on our lives. Like attracts like, so if your face is a beacon of joy, then it stands to reason that more joy will manifest itself in your reality. The truth is that pure joy is the default setting for the human experience, however our minds often prevent us from enjoying life as it should be. We have not yet collectively realised the limitations of living within the mind, as reflected in the global systems of Capitalism and power hierarchies. Until we do, we will always suffer. Free yourself as an individual and let your smile shine out as a sign of your freedom.
Share the magic
A smile is a universal symbol for joy. That in itself is a powerful thing, so use it as a means of doing some good. A smile is infectious and has a positive ripple effect on the world around you. It's a simple, non invasive way of spreading some joy to those who you come into contact with on a daily basis. Smile at strangers and associates alike. Smile at everyone who you come into eye contact with and who knows you may just be the reason for them smiling at the next person they see. There is something so profoundly beautiful about that concept and you have the power to put it into practice.
It costs nothing
Smiling is a gift bestowed on almost everyone completely free of charge and requiring minimal effort. Think of it as a powerful tool at your disposal and start actively using it as such. Instead of just bumbling onto the bus, face stricken with some sort of inexplicable torment as you merely search for the right change in your bag, try catching the drivers eye and beam a big smile at them as you take the ticket and go to find another unsuspecting target for your smile practice. As long as you keep it genuine, you can never do harm with a smile. You may feel a stab of hurt when someone ignores your efforts, or is rude to you even, but don't let this deter you. It's one second in your day, and who knows that angry stare back may have softened just out of your view, as they continue on and out of your life forever.
Instant face lift
On a completely superficial level, smiling makes you look younger and more beautiful. Sorry Victoria Beckham, but your po-faced attempts at beating the natural aging process have only served to make you look less attractive and old beyond your years. Yes, you may incur some 'laughter lines' around the eye area, but this is precisely what is wrong with our society. We have a weird and downright unhealthy obsession with the aesthetics of the human body and how it changes the more years of life we celebrate. Of course, how someone looks is important and beauty inspires us, however beauty is smiling and joy not freezing your facial expressions in a
Mask of success
People who smile more come across as more successful in their lives. A smile is a sign of confidence and projects self assurance. This is reflected back at us through marketing, which will always use a smiling person to denote success. Stress and suffering, no matter how great your job title, isn't the mark of success. Your contentment is the greatest marker of how well you're doing, and a genuine smile demonstrates this.