Are You Smiling? It’s Good for Your Health!

July 22, 2011


I recently received some very sad news, which deeply touched me and put me in a dark place. I got into a funk. My business partner, with her unique and very special sense of humor, stepped in. She very quickly had me laughing for about an hour with hilarious anecdotes, and soon I was sharing my own funny stories.  With laughter, she drew me out of the funk. I felt better and motivated again. And I was ever grateful to her.

Approaching any situation with a sense of humor, whether professionally or personally, is not only uplifting, it is engaging. It engenders goodwill.

Take a look at these 10 Funniest Commercials of All Time, as compiled in this recent article by Adweek. Yeah… You remember some of these, don’t you? They are memorable because they produce a laugh out loud response. They invoke a smile that feels good.

Using humor can trigger an emotional reaction to your message that makes it captivating, and therefore bolsters the brand awareness. Something that feels that good, inspires the viewer to then share it with family and friends – and that is how the viral spread begins.

Consider other scenarios: When you make clients chuckle, you help “break the ice” and develop rapport. Making them comfortable helps to develop trust and a smoother working relationship.

Show a self-deprecating sense of humor at the office and your colleagues and employees will feel appreciated and accepted working with you. A warm smile, a good laugh, develops a loyal bond.

Let’s not forget the power of “LOL” among loved ones. You just never know what kind of recent experience the person with whom you are has had. Coaxing a smile out of them can help encourage them and lessen the effect of any sadness, stress or anxiety.

“A smile starts on the lips, a grin spread to the eyes, a chuckle comes from the belly; but a good laugh bursts forth from the soul, overflows, and bubbles all around.” ~ Carolyn Birmingham.

So why is that upside down frown so powerful? Let’s examine a few reasons:

  1. When you smile, your brain releases endorphins, which send “feel good” messages throughout your body.
  2. Laughing can reduce the stress of an upsetting situation.
  3. A genuine smile invokes trust.
  4. A smile enhances our insight – it has been proven that it increases our ability to “see the big picture”.
  5. Studies have also proven that people who smile live longer.
  6. Above all, smiles are infectious. When you smile at someone, they are likely to return the smile and, for a little while, their “aches” are lessened. Then they turn around and smile at someone else and pass along that wonderful feeling to that person, who in turn smiles at yet another person. Before you know it, many attitudes have changed and the surrounding mood has been altered. The environment feels nicer.

Smiling and laughter are incredible tools to raise our own spirits. They are also powerful gifts to bring joy and inspiration to others. Tell us: What made you smile today?

3 responses to “Are You Smiling? It’s Good for Your Health!”

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