How much does a smile really mean?

A friendly smile can make your day that much brighter. Sometimes the absence of a smile can cast a cloud.

Customer service is one place where a smile does wonders. But if a smile from a stranger can make such a difference, imagine how important a smile is to your kids.

Kids pick up on more than the things you say. Your body language and facial expressions are the things that really show them what you are thinking.

A smile can bring so many good things:

  • A smile makes the person who does the smiling feel better.
  • A smile sends good vibes to the other person.
  • A smile reassures others that they’re important to you.
  • You smile shows positive energy, which naturally attracts and builds more positive energy around you.
  • You probably look a lot nicer when you smile, too.

Did you know…?

The expression on your face can contribute physiologically to the actual emotions you feel. So if you really don’t feel much like getting your smile on – do it anyway. The feeling will follow!

  • Researchers think that facial expressions can raise or lower the temperature of blood flowing to the part of the brain that regulates emotions, thus influencing the actual feeling.
  • Your heart rate and breathing will change a bit according to your expression.
  • Making the facial expression that represents a certain mood can help produce that feeling, even when you don’t know you’re doing it. For example, one study had people hold a pen between their teeth, producing an expression similar to a smile. This actually made the participants feel better than when they held it between their lips in a pout-like position!

My son reminds me to find my smile again every couple days

Since having a second baby three months ago, I’ll confess: I’ve been strung out. It’s way harder than I thought it would be.

I try to keep my cool around my preschooler even when his wiggliness and constant “Why, Mommy?” starts to grate on my still-sleep-deprived nerves.

He sees right through my facade. Sometimes he comes up and kisses me, saying, “There, that will make you feel better”.  It’s a bittersweet reminder for me, since I can see how much my mood impacts him.

So I’m trying to be more conscious of the message I’m sending with my face these days. After all, two healthy, bouncy little boys is a big reason to smile, I figure.

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Comments (2)

  1. BethGold

    so the best way to cure a hostless or tense moment is to play those dorkey kid songs….yes, im now one f those moms!! but for my kids it works. i also have to show having fun too. they pick up on anything! as my friend says, fake it until u make it. smile even if your not in a great mood. stressed out kids wont help anything.

    • Lisa

      Hey Beth, can you recommend some good dorky songs? I am seriously lacking in my kids’ music collection and would love to add some dorkiness to make us all smile some days!

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