Today is World Smile Day friends! Let me preface this by saying that it’s kind of ironic that I am writing about this because I’ve had people tell me I need to smile more, on more than one occasion. I will also say that it is one of my BIGGEST pet peeves when people tell me I need to smile!!! I smile ALL THE TIME, just because I happen to have BRF (B*&%$ resting face) does not mean that I am not happy. Moving on.
With that let me welcome you to Aloha Friday! Every friday I will post something inspirational, or service/volunteer oriented in the hopes that you will lead a life of love and compassion for yourself and those around you. Let’s start with something easy shall we?
World Smile Day, it’s a real thing. You can visit their website here: http://worldsmileday.com
You know that smiley face graphic that you see EVERYWHERE? well, the first might have been attributed to Harvey Ball, a graphic artist who was commissioned to design some buttons and what not to boost company morale for then Guarantee Mutual of Company of Ohio. You can read all about it on their website. The point is that the Harvey Ball World Smile Foundation is a REAL thing and their goal is to make people smile.
So today take some time out of your day to do a random act of kindness or simply smile at everyone you see. It’s safe to say that you never know what someone else is going through, and that a smile cannot and will not make you feel worse than you, or they already do. You may be amazed at how many people you will actually affect with your smile.
I’m a former teacher so I feel the need to teach and share information. So let me share some valuable information with you. Studies have shown that when you smile, your brain releases neuropeptides which helps to fight off stress. Feel good neurotransmitters are then released, (think dopamine and endorphins), which helps you to relax.
Smiling in CONTAGIOUS. Now, normally if things are contagious you would want to stay away from it right? (flu, cold, hand food mouth disease, diseases in general) However,in the case of smiles, a smile is GOOD, dare I say GREAT! There was one swedish study that shows the brains automatic response to a smile, is you guessed it, a smile! The same study also showed that it takes conscious effort to make a frown in response to a smile.
So if smiles are contagious, and they make you feel good, then common sense would tell us that smiles would also make others feel good. Studies have also shown that when we feel good, we are more likely to do good deeds, be kind, and as we say in Hawaii, “spread da aloha”. “Why should I smile?” you are thinking (what a cynic). Well, there are 3 reasons: 1. They are FREE. 2. They are universal, everyone in the world recognizes and utilizes a smile for the same reason, they are happy. 3. Good Karma! What goes around, comes around, at the very least, you will get a smile back.
So watchu gonna do brah? You bettah SMILE today! Spread that smile around like it’s the flu! Let’s make the world a better place, if at the least just for today.
Need some things to help you to smile? Well, for all you scrooges, here are 5 things that make me smile, and 5 things that you can do for World Smile Day that will hopefully make you and at least one other person smile!
5 things that make me smile:
- Remembering my wedding day. It was perfectly imperfect and it’s a day I will never forget because it was the day I married my best friend….and I saw my husband actually cry. In the 10 years I have been with him I have only seen him cry 3 other times.
- Remembering the birth of my son. It was the most horrible pain I’ve ever felt in my life, followed by more pain that was worse than that. BUT, it was the start of my relationship with my second best friend.
- Watching comedy movies! This is a given, comedies always make me laugh. My current favorite is The Other Woman staring Cameron Diaz. I was watching it on the plane the other day and I laughed so loud, for so long, the other passengers kept looking at me.
- Listening to the comedy station on Spotify. If you haven’t already, listen to the Love & Marriage playlist. You’ll feel like you are not alone in feeling like you are a total failure as an other half.
- I LOVE listening to christian music. It’s very calming, soothing, and empowering. You have to try it. (I should add that I don’t go to church, I used to but anyway that’s a post for another day.)
5 things for you to do for World Smile Day:
- Smile at absolutely everyone you make eye contact with. Follow it up with a “Have a good day!”
- Make someone smile: pay for someone else’s coffee before you leave the coffee shop, or buy them a donut too! Everyone loves donuts… Well, I do at least!
- Leave little notes of inspiration everywhere you go.
- Help an elderly person across the street or with their groceries. (I have a soft spot for old people, especially grumpy old people)
- Start a smile jar: Everyday, put in a slip of paper with something that made you smile for that day. When you are feeling sad, take out a slip of paper. Don’t forget to put it back in and mix it up because we don’t want to forget that memory!!!
- BONUS: Give someone a compliment. It’s not hard to tell someone “Cute jacket!” “You are beautiful” or “You have great feet!” ( I know that last one was weird, but hey, it will make them laugh, guarans brah.)
In the words of Vitamin C, “put a smiiilleee on your face, make the world a better place!” Smile on Friends!