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4 Ways Your Smile Is Your Secret Weapon To Success

10 June 2017

Did you know that your smile is one of the most crucial tools you own in order to be more successful? Very few would argue that smiling isn’t great for you but we doubt you’ve ever thought about how your smile can truly impact your career and your chances of getting what you want in life. Here are four ways with which you can use your smile to your advantage.

1. Smiling is known to reduce stress and improve your mood but it can also make you seem more trustworthy, competent and of course, likeable. All traits you no doubt know are vital for achieving great things.

A study published in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, found that the simple act of smiling can lighten the mood in a stressful situation and make you seem more expert. In a tense setting, smiling can be your golden ticket out of it. Not only does it decrease your stress levels, it makes you more relaxed, allowing you to better collect your thoughts and make more informed decisions.

2. Smiling has also been proven to be contagious. So if you’re finding yourself stuck in an awkward or tough situation with other people, you smiling can cause them to smile too, leading them to being more relaxed as well.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison studied this phenomenon and Adrienne Wood, the lead author from the study, told the Huffington Post that it is a way that our brain tries to understand other people.

“When you see a facial expression and you want to know what it means, you recreate that expression in your brain,” Wood told the Huffington Post. “In daily life, you rarely observe facial expressions in a vacuum, and we believe that you combine information from sensorimotor simulation with your understanding of the situation in order to fully comprehend other people’s feelings.”

The study also found that making eye contact is the best way to get a similar emotional response from others, as it helps the brain understand exactly what someone else feels. Our brains register what another person is feeling and it allows us to make an appropriate response in return.

So if you’re in a stressful situation with others and you want to diffuse the tension, next time just try smiling. You’ll be surprised at how much lighter the mood will become in the whole room.

3. In her book The Power Of Body Language: How To Succeed In Every Business and Social Encounter, Tonya Reiman talks about the need to perfect your own smile in order to expand your possibilities, both in business and socially. She mentions how it will make people believe that you are more warm, polite, honest, successful and overall happy.

However, there are different types of smiles. The main two are the fake smile and the genuine one. And although a fake smile can still help elevate the mood and reduce stress, others can usually easily detect a fake smile from a genuine one. This, research has found, comes mainly from the fact that in a genuine smile, the eyes are involved; whilst in a fake smile they are not.

There are two muscles at play in this situation. With a genuine smile, both muscles are working (one for the mouth and one for the eyes), whilst with a fake smile only one is working (the one for the mouth). This is important to remember as a fake smile could sometimes come off as rude or unwelcoming, which is why you should work on perfecting your smile.

4. However, as mentioned, even a fake smile can brighten your mood and make you feel happy, so you should always aim to smile more. Being happy has also been proven to make people more productive.

Successful people are constantly ticking off boxes from their to-dos, persistently completing challengers and a lot of it comes from feeling happy. In a study by the University of Warwick, economists found that happiness made people around 12% more productive. Workers, who felt more content in their jobs and in general happier to be at work, did more work than those who were counting down the hours until they could leave. Happiness is one of the keys to accomplishment, something you definitely need on your way to your success.

So next time things get a little much or you’re feeling a bit unmotivated or unproductive, just give yourself a chance to smile. You will be surprised by how many good things can come from it and you will feel more confident going forward with your day. And if you’re unhappy with your smile, then take charge and don’t hesitate to chat to one of our smile specialists today.

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