Do you find yourself at times feeling low? Possibly burned out, or spent? We all do from time to time, and, not to sound too much like a cartoon animal gearing up for a musical number, you could try one simple thing that takes practically no effort whatsoever. Naturally, I’m talking about smiling.
According to Mother Teresa, “Everytime you smile, it is an action of love – a gift.” Don’t you think the world around us is in need of a gift? I’m smiling at you all right now, as I do each time I’m writing. Of course, you can’t see it for obvious reasons, but it’s there all the same. And while it may be a cliché, smiling is contagious. Watch out! You just might catch the smiles yourself! Do I see the corner of your lips turning a little? Don’t fight it. Give in and smile! It’s good for you!
I suppose I could throw some medical jargon at you for good measure and bring up all the health benefits of that simple smile, like how smiling raises endorphins, serotonin, and neuropeptides (which, let’s face it, is a funny word), but you already know all that.
You also know how it lowers blood pressure and stress, since the sight of a smile activates the region of the prefrontal cortex responsible for feelings of joy, and how smiling uses seventeen muscles as opposed to the forty-three needed for a frown.
I mean, after all, you’re a super intelligent person and there’s little left I could say to surprise you about that smile on your lips.
At this point I think you could probably start imagining me as some kind of animated animal jumping off the walls. Seriously, that isn’t a joke, because while I could go into a giant sales pitch about smiling, I’d rather have you envision me as a cartoon critter singing you a song (which should be goofy enough to make you smile automatically). Still, facts are facts: no matter how hard you’ve been pushing your nose to the grindstone, it’s never too hard to smile. It’s good to do, good to see, and frankly, as Mother Teresa put it, a darn good “gift.”