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TEDtalk: The hidden power of smiling

TEDtalk: The hidden power of smiling

I’m sure you would have heard the expression, “he/she has an infectious smile.” It’s true! A smile can also be referred to as being contagious. I’m not sure either ‘infectious’ or ‘contagious’ creates a positive emotion as they are usually associated with disease! I prefer to think of a smile as ‘inspiring’.

What I didn’t realise is that a simple smile can be so healthy for all of us and those around us. In this TEDtalk¬†Ron Gutman explains a few unknown truths about smiling.

Did you know that smiling can…

  • increase your life expectancy?
  • make you more attractive to others?
  • create the same endorphins as when you eat chocolate?
  • give you the same feeling as having lots of money?
  • change the way you would react to certain situations?

The human body never ceases to amaze me. One of the studies that Ron mentions was where a subject had an MRI scan of brain activity in a normal state when they smiled and then the same subject had botox injected into the muscles that are used to smile to inhibit smiling. The MRI scan was done again but showed a different response. This shows that even though we may be thinking clearly, without smiling we may not be thinking as clearly as we think!

Let’s try an experiment: Why don’t you try smiling at some strangers you pass in the street, crossing the road, in the elevator, on the train and see how they react. Do they react with a smile back? Do you feel good about yourself?

I would love to hear your results. Leave a facebook comment below for us all to experience the results.

Yours in keep on smiling,

Paul.

Belinda Vesey-Brown About the author
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