Proof That a Simple Smile Can Make You Happy

November 12, 2015

 

A smiling face is a beautiful face. A smiling heart is a happy heart – Dr. T.P Chia.

I am continuing a series of articles today from the top life-changing attitude attributes from Jeffery Gitomer’s book “The Golden Book of Yes”. These are habits that, when developed, will keep your attitude at its most positive, and enable you to be the confident, capable you are intended to be.

Todays attitude attribute is one I firmly believe in. It is very simple, yet many of us ignore its amazing benefits. The command (if you can even call it that) is to smile. It is amazing how much power a smile has. Its benefits to you and to those around you are very much underestimated, especially in today’s fast-paced, stressful world.

I find the significance and power of a smile so important, I made it the first chapter of my book, “30 Days to a More Powerful Life“. I share this chapter with you here….

How much power does a smile have? Think about holding or watching a baby. What happens when that baby innocently smiles at us? Well, I cannot think of one human being that would not smile back at the baby, regardless of the mood they are in. If the smile of an infant only several months old can have such a positive effect, can it be the same with older kids and adults? I am a firm believer in the power of a smile. In his book “How to Win Friends and Influence People”, Dale Carnegie notes that a smile is a simple way to make a great first impression.[i] Based on what I have read and my own observations, here are several powerful effects of a smile:

  • It makes us feel good about ourselves. I’m not an expert on psychology, but it is said that, not only do our actions follow our emotions, but it can work the other way around. When we smile, the positive emotions follow. By smiling and remaining positive, we have a better outlook on all aspects of our life.
  • We receive positive reactions from others. Think of the baby and how we smile back. In most cases, if we smile at someone, they will smile back.
  • It is a sign of confidence. Think of those who constantly have smiles on their faces. Doesn’t it seem like they have everything totally under control?
  • It can solve a negative situation. I’ve dealt with angry customers and upset students. When I approach them with a smile and gentleness, they are much more willing to listen and cooperate.

Smiling is also known to have several health benefits. I read an article online by Dr. Mark Stibich. He lists 10 ways that smiling affects our health, stress level, and attractiveness:[ii]

  1. Smiling makes us more attractive.
  2. Smiling improves our mood.
  3. Smiling is contagious.
  4. Smiling relieves stress.
  5. Smiling boosts your immune system.
  6. Smiling lowers blood pressure.
  7. Smiling releases endorphins, natural pain killers, and Serotin. It’s a natural drug!
  8. Smiling lifts the face and makes you look younger.
  9. Smiling makes you seem successful.
  10. Smiling helps you stay positive.

I love the test Dr. Stibich includes at the end of his article. He challenges us to smile, and then try to think of something negative without losing the smile. It is very difficult to do because the smile sends the message that all is well in our worlds, and it conflicts and actually repels any negative thoughts.

As you can see, there are plenty of other benefits to a smile. It is such a simple concept, yet how many of us fail to do this? I do my best to keep a smile on my face, but sometimes still end up doing so much less than I should. Smiling is contagious. Starting from just one person, it can spread joy very quickly, and have powerful impacts on everyone in the office, classroom, household, or whatever environment. Why not help ourselves and those around us stay positive and enjoy life simply by smiling often? It is a challenge that I am willing to take, and I suggest it to you too.

Action Plan: As mentioned, smiling is a very easy thing to do. Even when things are not going as well as we would like, we can make a conscious effort to smile, and it can make a difference in our circumstances. Whenever you think of it throughout the day, allow yourself to smile. The more you do it, the more natural it becomes. Eventually, you begin to experience the many benefits mentioned above. The result is a happier and more beneficial life for you and for those around you.

[i] Carnegie, D. (1936) How to Win Friends and Influence People, 95. New York. Simon and Schuster.

[ii] Stibich, M. Ph.D, Top 10 Reasons to Smile. About.com. Updated February 4, 2010.

I certainly hope this information convinces you to smile more today. As you will see, the more you do so, the better you will feel and will help others do the same. Enjoy the blessings 🙂

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What’s Right With You?

December 15, 2014

What’s wrong with me? Have you ever asked yourself that question? If you are like almost all human beings, you have. Unfortunately, many people ask the question all too often. When we are struggling to find the desired partner,lose weight, break a habit, keep a job, or whatever, we tend to focus on what is wrong with us.

The problem is that as we keep our focus on what is wrong with us, the Law of Attraction says we ultimately cause more of it to appear in our lives. How do you turn this around? Spend time as often as possible thinking about what is right with you. No one is perfect. Yet even if you have many negative qualities (all of us have at least some) there is at least something that you are good at and some positive quality you can share with the world. Everyone also has at least something they can be thankful for. Even if things in your life aren’t going well, there is at least something you can thank God for, even if it’s simply the ability to breathe and drink clean water.

The bottom line is that, according the same law mentioned above, we receive in life what we focus on. If we focus on what is right and good about ourselves and our lives, we will see more of it. Ultimately, our positive qualities grow even stronger, and we are able to make more of a difference in the world.

I strongly suggest you change your focus to what is right with you. What do you have to offer the world? What are your most proud of about yourself? What do you have to be thankful for? The more you focus on that, the happier you will be. And it’s amazing how those negative qualities tend to naturally disappear! If you look closely enough, there is a lot that’s right with you. Focus on that “rightness” and goodness, and it will be a greater part of your life. Enjoy the blessings 🙂


A Thanksgiving Reflection

November 29, 2013

Here in the U.S. we celebrated Thanksgiving on November 28. It’s a day to pause and give thanks for all of the blessings we have in life and enjoy the day with people we are thankful to have in our lives.

I always reflect on things to be thankful for on this day and the ones after it. Many other people do the same. However, this year I am doing some extra thinking about things to be thankful for. This is because I have learned more than ever before about gratitude this year, mainly due to a book I read by Rhonda Byrne called, “The Magic”. The book takes the reader on a 28 day journey on being grateful for all of the blessings in all areas of life now, and those yet to come. The goal is that it becomes a regular habit to be thankful each day.

For me, the book has for the most part accomplished that purpose. Sure, there are days where I forget to thank God for my blessings, and others that I complain about injustice or what I don’t have. For the most part though, gratitude has become a regular part of my life, and  I am thankful for that in itself.

I have come to realize that the more we appreciate the small things in life, the bigger blessings we receive, and the more reason we have to be thankful. I especially reflect on that this Thanksgiving season.

I share this to portray my own thinking, but also challenge anyone else to strongly consider the blessings you have in all areas of your life. As I mentioned before, this will not only add more joy and happiness to your life now, but will provide more reasons to be thankful as you continue to make gratitude a regular habit.

As long as I am being thankful, I will thank all of my wonderful readers from the bottom of my heart. I have received a far greater response in this space than I could have ever imagined, and I thank you all for visiting, spreading the word, and sharing your input. It means the world to me. Have an excellent day : )


Powerful Advice That Will Serve You Well

September 17, 2013

If you want love you’ve got to give a little

If you want faith just believe a little

If you want peace turn your cheek a little

You’ve got to give, you’ve got to give to live.

The above lyrics come from one of my favorite 80s songs, “Give to Live”, by Sammy Hagar. I share it because I have been reminded of this message on several occasions lately. Again, I take that as a sign that God is trying to tell me something.

What is He trying to tell me? I believe the message is that if you want something really bad, He expects you to give it away first. Give to others what you are seeking yourself.

It makes sense according to the law of sowing and reeping (or the Law of Attraction). In essence, you get what you give. If you think positive thoughts, you receive positive results. This takes it a step further in saying that when you take positive actions, you receive positive outcomes and responses.

This law is so simple, yet how many people ignore it? I say this because even though I am aware of how this works, I still fall into the same trap. Sometimes the simplicity of it actually scares people away. Other times, we just get so caught up in doubt and negativity that it clouds our thinking from faith and positivity.

I ask you now…what is it you want most in life? Is it happines? Then go make someone happy. Is it more time for yourself? First spend some time serving someone else. Is it more money? Start by sharing some money with a charity or someone who needs it more than you.

Whatever it is you are most desperately seeking, find a way to serve and give it to someone else. Please don’t do it with the intent on receiving back, because that defeats the whole purpose. Instead, do it without even thinking about it. Do it for the great feeling you receive knowing you helped someone else in need. I have found from experience that when you give this way, it not only comes back to you, but it arrives in more and better ways than you can ever think of.

I challenge you to give away what you want most today. I promise that you won’t be wanting it for much longer because you will have it in abundance. Enjoy the blessings : )


11 Ways You Can Improve Your Life Practically Overnight

September 7, 2013

You can’t go wrong with these tips. If you follow them consistently, the desired changes in your life will occur immediately.

one step at a time

Have you ever been at a point so low in your life that you actually started doubting yourself or your faith? Have you ever felt like the world was against you- maybe you can’t find a job, your pockets are empty, your relationships are failing, you’re not getting anywhere with a diet, all your peers are moving on up in life while you’re stuck in a rut, or something similar? You know, where it seems like nothing is working out or you want something so badly but there just isn’t an opportunity for you to get it? I know I have. I’ve been at a point so low that even though I knew there was fun to be had, that things would eventually get better, that I was loved, that if I just believed and had faith my time would come, etc… I just didn’t feel it, and I let it…

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16 Signs You’re Happier Than You Think

August 14, 2013

This is too valuable to pass up the opportunity to share…

Thought Catalog

Our personal happiness is always at the whim of our own self-sabotage if, at any given moment, we don’t feel completely overjoyed. We mistake this for genuine dissatisfaction or unhappiness. I think we are so far from accepting that happiness is not a sustained sensation of joy that sometimes, we’re happier than we think we are. Happiness means interest, it means honing in on the art of learning to just be. Sometimes we’re doing this and we don’t even realize it, and we let our minds talk us out of our own contentment with petty complaints and minor issues that we irrationally expound upon. Part of getting over this is coming to terms with the little ways our lives show us we’re happy even if we’re not conscious of it.

1. It’s not like it was– you can look back and feel gratitude and pride for getting through a rough…

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How Are You Like Dorothy From The Wizard Of Oz?

July 14, 2013

The Wizard of Oz is one of my favorite movies ever made. If you’ve never seen it or need a brief review, here’s the main idea: The main character Dorothy is blown from a tornado in her home in Kansas to a beautiful place called Oz. In this place she is provided with shoes that provide unlimited power. In fact, the power is so great that the wicked witch constantly tries to take them from her. Dorothy is a hero in Oz because her house landed on a previous wicked witch who had been terrorizing the place and kills her. She also finds great friendships, and wild adventures, all surrounded by unthinkable beauty.

Even though Dorothy is provided with many great things, she misses the people at home in Kansas, and all throughout the movie she expresses her desire to get back home. To fulfill this wish, she is told she needs to make a long journey to see the wizard of oz who can grant this wish. She finally makes this long and sometimes dangerous journey and gets to the wizard where he is about to grant her wish by taking her back to Kansas. However, there is a glitch in the plan and now she is still stuck in Oz. Then the good witch who provided the powerful shoes comes to her rescue.

Herein lies the most ironic part of the movie and the theme of this post. The good witch shows Dorothy how to use the powerful shoes to take her home. However, she says that Dorothy had the power to go home all along.

What is it you are wishing for today? Whatever it is, I would like to remind you that you already have the power. Whether you are seeking love, joy, peace, patience, self-control, they are fruits of the spirit that are already part of you. 

Even if you are seeking an external thing, such as more money, a job, a new home, or anything like it, please know that the same all-powerful energy that is part of you is part of the the thing you are seeking. When you focus on that power, you let the fruits of the spirit manifest through you. You don’t have to strive for happiness. It’s already a part of you! Just meditate on that fact and let it manifest through you. As far as a material item, keep focused on that item and on the power you possess. When you do this you attract it to you. Then be sure to take any inspired action to make it happen. In the movie, the good witch gave Dorothy the instructions and she followed them. You need to do the same to make it happen and make the power work.

I will remind you that the power you have is very strong. As a result, just like in the movie, the evil one will make every effort to take it from you. However, if you rely on God and meditate on His power that is a part of you, He will protect you from those evil influences.

I remind you again that you already have the power you are seeking. Use it with confidence and for good, and there’s no place it can’t take you. Enjoy its wonderful blessings : )