For hundreds of years people have been trying to work out what the key to happiness really is. Some say that it is money, others say that it is family. However, I believe that a simple smile from those around you (or even just yourself!) is enough to change the way you feel and make anyone happy.
In 2007, researchers established that yawns were contagious and that one person yawning could trigger a yawning response from those all around them even without anyone realising. Well what if this was the case with smiling?
I have found that seeing others smile around me often makes me feel more positive about myself. This idea has been proven by multiple videos across the internet of people simply laughing or smiling resulting in happiness being spread across the world. It seems that smiles are a universal language!
In the video below, Ron Gutman discusses how smiling can help your marriage, he also suggests that the “span of smile predicts span of life” – now who wouldn’t want a longer life!?
We can also see that some psychologists suggest that smile therapy can help people who suffer from mental illness to feel better about themselves as smiling releases endorphins and helps individuals to relax. This is where people are either made to laugh or encouraged to smile and it really does show that hope and happiness can be generated from something as simple as a smile!
While in no way do I suggest that a smile is able to cure illnesses or heal the world, I do however feel that if you take just a second to smile at even just one person you see, it will spread and eventually everyone around you will be smiling, helping to create positivity, productivity and progress in the world.
We have now established that smiling has incredible health benefits, creates positivity in everyone and can even make you live longer, what is stopping you from spreading the happiness bug? Try it today and even if you don’t like it you can go back to frowning, although I have a feeling that once you have caught the happiness bug you will not want to give it up, you may even want to pass it on and watch as everyone around you gains a significantly more positive outlook on life. So have a go right now – what’s the worst that can happen?
– This week's #staffreads was written by William Dodge who recently carried out work experience with Virgin Unite.
– This is a guest blog and may not represent the views of Virgin.com. Please see virgin.com/terms for more details.