A lot of people have studied smiling. It has been proven that smiling is good for you, but how good? What can you expect from showing your pearly whites? Lets find out.
A 2012 Association for Psychological Science study published that, after a series of stressful tasks, those who were made to smile had a reduction in heart rate, and quicker stress recovery rates compared to those who were expressionless.
A Penn State University study focusing on the service industry found that authentic smiles from servers influenced positive feelings. The study states, “smiling employees came across as more likable and friendly”.
It is natural for the brain to think in terms of worse case scenario. This, and our instincts, are what keeps us safe. Smiling, even a fake smile, can train our brain to think more positively. According to author Shawn Achor of The Happiness Advantage, “happiness is a work ethic – it’s something that requires our brain to train just like an athlete… has to train”.
Mirror neurons, that are located in our premotor cortex, trigger our “imitation response”. Neuroscientist Marco Lacoboni describes, when you see others smiling it, “initiates a cascade of neural activity that evokes the feeling we typically associate with a smile”. This also proves that we need to surround ourselves with happy people!
Can smiling make you smarter? Maybe not. But a 2013 University of California, San Francisco study found that those who smiled had a better approach to problem solving, and would come up with more solutions than their “negative” competition.
As you can tell, smiling can make a great improvement to your life. If you aren’t comfortable with your smile, we have tons of options to help, contact us.