Apparently, research has proved that a smile gives the brain stimulation equal of 2000 bars of chocolate! Or receiving £16,000 in cash. Ron Gutman’s TED talk outlines this and other positive outcomes of smiling, describing research from around the world that gives weight to the “super power” (as Gutman terms it) in a smile. For example, children smile around 400 times per day (adults around 20). As smiles have such an infectious quality, it is no wonder we like spending time around children!
It is interesting, but unsurprising, that the act of smiling – and genuine smiling, not the forced kind – has profound impact on the way that one is perceived. The radiation of joy, of self-assurance and confidence through one’s non-verbal communication will enable others to feel that way too. In the same way that saying “thank you” repays the investment, as I wrote about previously, a simple smile, reaches out beyond one’s own self and plays a part in building stronger and better relationships and leads to a healthier and happier life. Although the suggestion that it takes fewer muscles to smile than frown has been proved a fallacy, it is still very much worth the effort – and far fewer calories!