top of page

The healing power of smiling

How many times a day do you smile?


Allow me to invite you to do a little experiment. Please bring your attention to your facial expression, are you frowning, are you pulling a face, is your expression neutral, are you smiling? And how are you feeling, what is your mental/emotional state right in this moment? Please take few seconds to uknowledge that.


Now please flash your most beautiful smile. On the left is one of mine to inspire you!:)

How does that feel? Is there any change? Are you perhaps feeling your mood has lifted up? Are you experiencing a happier feeling? More positive?


What you are experiencing is the power of smiling!

Let me explain.

You have probably read the title "the face-mind-heart connection" on the homepage of my website https://www.urbangoddessrituals.com/ and you probably know of my fascination with this subject. In other words, how our facial expressions affect our mind, how our thoughts affect our facial expressions, how our mind, heart and face are interconnected on a profound emotional level. How our facial muscles movements are connected to our facial expressions and therefore emotions.

The muscles in our face attach to other muscles or directly to our skin rather than to our bones like the muscles in other areas of our body. Because of this, they are heavily influenced by our emotions. It is primarely our emotions that initiate and activate facial muscles movement which we call facial expressions. The awareness of this connection has been a focus of my work for over a decade and I Iove witnessing client's faces change as they become more aware of their emotions, thoughts and state of mind and their heart opens and expand.


Did you know that your facial expressions, by moving your facial muscles send messages to your brain changing brain functioning?


So, WHAT HAPPENS TO YOUR BRAIN WHEN YOU SMILE?


We activate 53 muscles with a single smile! It is such a great facial exercise.The main two muscles used for smiling are the major zogomatic muscle on your cheeks, pulling up the corner of your mouth and the orbicularis oculi muscle around your eyes.

A smile is not just a facial expression, it is said a smile increases your face value! A smile is an approach to deal with adversity and negativity on a daily basis, a smile can just change the attitude we have towards others, towards life and how we deal with problems. With a smile we connect with others on a heart level based on trust.


Smiling have a positive effect on our physical and mental health by decreasing stress-enhancing hormones (including cortisol, and adrenaline) and increasing mood-enhancing hormones, the endorphins that relieve pain and stress. Smiling also reduces heart rate and decreases blood pressure.


When we smile we release four main neurotransmitters (brain chemicals), Dopamine, Seratonin, Endorphines and Oxitocine which help releasing stress and and make us feel calm.

DOPAMINE acts on our ability to think and plan. It also produces a feeling of pleasure. A study reported that a single smile generates the same amount of dopamine as 2000 bars of chocolate!

OXITOCINE also called the love hormone, helps us develop strong bonds.

SERATONIN makes us feel good and happy, promoting relaxation and a feeling of wellbeing. It is a naturally produced antidepressant, helping counteract anxiety and stabilizing our mood.

ENDORPHINS reduce pain and stress levels, reduced heart rate and blood pressure. Make us happier and impruve the immune system.

Some recent study has shown that the facial muscle stimulation that happens with covert smiling stimulates the amygdala which is the part of our brain that has to do with emotional events, responsible for regulating emotions, motivation, and the sense of reward. The stimulation of the amygdala therefore is responsible for creating positive state of mind and helping overcoming a depressive state.

Smiling is a powerful tool for happiness or mental wellbeing, good health and (research has found) to live longer!


Coming to a conclusion, here is my suggestion: practice smiling and hold your smile for 15 seconds. Smile consciously every single morning upon rising (add the feeling of gratitude), feel the effect of the “happy hormones” and witness the healing power of a smile.


Happy smiling!



68 views2 comments

2 Comments


Great post! I assume some would say that smiling creates wrinkles, but maybe the good kind of wrinkles? Also, why 15s? xx

Like

Unknown member
Oct 19, 2021

Great post, Veronica! I've personally been on a bit of a related mission myself with regard to smiling. I've been making a very conscious effort particularly over this last 18 months, to smile at as many people as possible - especially when out walking in streets and parks and shops etc..... Making conscious eye to eye contact with absolute 'strangers' and smiling at them - most people will smile back and its heartwarming and interesting to note and sense that innate deep down feeling of our absolute interconnectedness.

Like
bottom of page