I have always believed smiling is good. Personally i always try and keep smiling. It is an entirely different matter that my smiling face looks at lot like Arnab Goswami in thick debate on News Hour tonight.
Something that i learned very early, way back in my childhood days, was that if you keep a smile pasted on your face, which by practise should make you look like you are a vulture and you just crossed Death Valley, people will get really scared of you. That is the actual truly infectious smile. People should take one look at you and hope to die peacefully of a horrible unknown viral infection, than imagining what you have been upto to look like this.
As per a well known movie dialog, its quite easy to smile, it is a simple three part process. Look normal, widen your lips, open your eyes a big as they can get, and assume you are looking like Dr. Evil.
So much for the perfect smiling face. Lets move on to the purpose and goodness of general smiling. While rummaging through some pages on the internet, for most of good part of yesterday, reading about smiles, all through the morning, then a bit in afternoon and some more in the evening, i did come across lots of useful information about them. To me it seems, that the internet is full of people on one side telling you how to fake a smile if you can’t honestly come up with a real one, and then on the other hand they give you lessons on how to spot fake ones from real ones, effectively.
The time i did not spend reading and in between meals, i spent practising the same in front of the mirror. First trying to come up with a fake smile, stick with it for sometime, and then trying to spot whether its a fake one, in my mirror image. Eventually the mirror had enough of me and cracked up. And no wonder my mom does not now want to look me in the face even, its been contorted into a very hideous combination of a questioning smile.
A lot of my research also went into the domain of benefits of smiling. From what i could boil down from my extensive research, were 4 major points every internet blogger would agree to. I read 3 blogs and 1 article, which i think are more than enough research for any such topic. Mine being the fifth one which i would hopefully be reading on the same topic.
So here are some of the basic benefits,
- Smiling lowers your heart rate, thus reducing stress.
- Smiles are contagious, you have one on your face, pretty soon everyone you see would be smiling too.
- Smiles make you look attractive. There is some doubt on this one, but i went with the majority. It didn’t work out so well for The Joker did it, speaking of which, do you want to know how i got these scars?
- Smiles increase your lifespan. Maybe over the long run. If you can believe that a normal heart rate, a stress free life is good and smiles are the only contagious diseases spreading around, also the theory that attractive people live longer than their uglier counterparts, i can even give you 13 reasons why attractive people live longer, you are on the right track.
There could be a lot more benefits too, though from my research i found that they mostly stem from these 4. Then while we are at it, it would be so much so better to see, into these 4 reasons too, a bit of an in depth analysis.
Lowering your heart rate with a smile
And thus reducing stress. Every activity comes with a disclaimer and a rider. Do it at your own risk. If you are seen grinning at a funeral, all happy about the inheritance, maybe your stress would go down, but what of the people attending in sorrow? Similarly smiling consistently in front of a cop would land you in a lot of trouble. That too when maybe he has just stopped you for standing besides a corpse, gun in hand. You could go for the insanity plea eventually. Worst, you are stopped by the Delhi Police around Independence day and you smiling in their faces. None of the situations may lower your heart rate and reduce stress, neither in the short run nor the long run.
Smiles are contagious
Like i wrote earlier, here is a rider attached too. If you aren’t the one smiling, and everybody you come across on the street is, promptly check if you are wearing you pants. This situation here is bit gender biased, especially in Indian context. Because if you are a female, and you are slightly underdressed, by which i mean, that people from opposite sex can see you face clearly, you are in for a lot more looks than a simple smile. It could be hungry eyes too.
But once you have checked and rechecked your attire, and still people are looking at you smiling, it will drive you crazy to your core. Your only option would be to smile back and paste a grin on your face as well, hence the contagiousness. There would be another bloke, like you were, without a smile and now its their turn to go through what you just went through and that ought to bring a genuine smile on your face. That is what everyone in the street is thinking smiling.
Smiles make you look attractive
This again is a hugely biased analysis. It applies to boys and girls, males and females differently. Why? Good question. Females do not need smiles to look attractive. They smile to bring boys to knees, make puppies out of perfectly good men, so that they can be turned into an obedient lot.
All it takes is a smiling girls face from behind the steering wheel, to forget that she almost ran over you when she mistook her cars brakes for the accelerator. Once smile and you are ready to go back to crossing the road again to give her another chance at killing you. Everyone needs practise you say. On the other hand, when guys smile so to impress a girl, they tend to forget about their roving eyes, which kind of gives out that the smile is not because they are looking at their faces only. And thus goes the attractiveness part too.
Smiling increases your life span
Yes it does. Infact if you are able to save yourself any day from the above situations, you would but of course live much longer. It is so much like life insurance. You put in all the efforts but its the others in your life which reap the benefit off it. They don’t get to look at the real you, hence you don’t get to see your real self, thus you don’t get killed by any random man on the street just because they hated how you look. Yep smile is your ultimate vitamin for longevity.
Infact even after all the aforementioned pros and cons, i would say keep smiling. Smile and let the world wonder what are you upto now.
Once you actually start doing it, it would bring a genuine smile on your face realising people get so perplexed by such a simple weapon. A smile. Hands up i have a smile on my face.