aside Happiness

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The best way to start your day is to wake up, be greatful and tell yourself: “Today will be a good day”

Find something about this day that you are looking forward to, it might be as simple as treating yourself to a good lunch, a nice hike or getting excited to meet someone you have been looking forward to see.

Tell yourself all the things you are grateful for, like the people close to you in your life, your health or some of the things you are good at, remind yourself about all of that.

Put on your favorite music while you are getting ready to face the day, and before you leave the house, give yourself a big bright smile in the mirror.

It might sound totally ridiculous and you might not even want to see yourself in the mirror some days, but did you know studies have actually proved that just giving yourself a smile in the mirror can reduce stress and make you happier all together.

Have a look at this, found at; http://www.theatlantic.com/health


 

PROBLEM: Happiness makes us smile, but can smiling make us happy? Even if it’s a fake smile, because your mouth is propped open by chopsticks? There’s the standard smile, which remains located in the muscles surrounding the mouth, and the genuine (or Duchenne) smile, which spreads to the eyes and, at least anecdotally, both looks and feels warmer and more natural. Does one work better than the other?

METHODOLOGY: In an experiment that was smile-worthy in its own right, researchers used chopsticks to manipulate the facial muscles of their 169 participants into a neutral expression, a standard smile, or a Duchenne smile. In addition to the chopstick placement, some were explicitly instructed to smile. Then, they were subjected to a series of stress-inducing, multitasking activities, which they struggled to perform while continuing to hold the chopsticks in their mouths. The subjects’ heart rates and self-reported stress levels were monitored throughout.

RESULTS: The participants who were instructed to smile recovered from the stressful activities with lower hear rates than participants who held neutral expressions, and those with Duchenne smiles were the most relaxed of all, with the most positive affect. Those with forced smiles held only by the chopsticks also reported more positive feelings than those who didn’t smile at all.

CONCLUSION: When a situation has you feeling stressed or flustered, even the most forced of smiles can genuinely decrease your stress and make you happier.

The full study,”Grin and Bear It: The Influence of Manipulated Positive Facial Expression on the Stress Response,” is published in the journal Psychological Science


 

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So give a smile to yourself today darling, and the people around you, for the smiles you get back may just make you happier.

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