Smile and the Whole World Smiles with You

I’ve been carrying out a secret experiment lately. I wanted to see what would happen if I smiled more and whether the world really did “smile with you”.

When we smile our face lights up, we can literally light up a room with just a smile. Some people are lucky and have naturally smiley faces – two of my very close friends do and they are very popular. I unfortunately, am not one of those people and can look stern if I am not smiling.   So for the last year in my happiness mission I started to smile more.   The results have been amazing.

I became aware of all the muscles and tension held in my face when I attended yoga classes and at the end of the class through the relaxation part/cool down we would lie down with the intention of relaxing every muscle and fibre in our body. If you haven’t tried yoga or relaxation classes before try this simple exercise. When you next get the opportunity, lie completely flat and still, starting with your face, relax all your facial muscles, your lips, mouth, jaw, eyes, eyebrows, instantly you will feel lighter. If you have time, do this for all the muscles in your body right from your head down to your toes, relaxing each and every muscle you become aware of. You will be surprised at how much tension this releases and how much lighter and relaxed you become. This exercise also works really well if you have difficulty sleeping.

Smiling releases endorphins and it is very difficult to stay angry or worried if you smile. Try it next time you are not feeling at your best, choose to smile and see how your emotion changes.

Whenever I see a baby in the supermarket and it smiles I can’t help but smile back and usually if I take a look around I notice that other people nearby are also smiling. The smile is infectious.

So back to my experiment, I started to smile more during my daily commute to work. When my train arrives in London I walk across London Bridge, to the left I can see St Paul’s and to my right Tower Bridge. I smile to myself as I realise how lucky I am to enjoy this wonderful view every morning. I have also made a “happy playlist” on my i-pod which never fails to make me smile.   As a result, I have noticed that more people seem to be smiling at me. I have even struck up new friendships on my daily commute. We all helped each other out during the winter, when the line on our commute suffered landslides. We took it in turns to drive to an alternative station. We also text each other when trains have been cancelled, we share information and recommendations for best physiotherapists, decorators in the area.  The results have been amazing and all this from smiling more?

I wonder what would happen if each one of us were to smile a little bit more and that smile were to reverberate to say another 5 people, they in turn do the same – just imagine the possibilities.   Everywhere might become a happier place.

Try it, next time you are travelling to work, standing in a queue or paying for something.

I would love to hear your thoughts on smiling and what happens when you smile at someone you don’t know, or even someone you do know. Let’s try and raise the happiness stakes. Remember smiling is infectious.

Below are some quotes, the last one is my favourite:-

“Keep smiling, because life’s a beautiful thing and there’s so much to smile about”  – Marilyn Monroe

“A smile is a curve that sets everything straight” – Phyllis Diller

“I have many problems in my life but my lips don’t know that – they always smile” – Charlie Chaplin

“A smile is the prettiest thing that you can wear” – author unknown

Frank Sinatra –

Wishing all my lovely readers a happy and smiley week.