A smile is a form that expresses positive emotions and is one of the most common non-verbal cues used to establish connection between human beings. It is the universal language used by people all over the world. One could say it was the “handshake of 2020” (even though you couldn’t see it behind their mask, you could see it in their eyes and the rest of their face, maybe even with the upward movement of their mask…lol!)
A smile reflects contentment, pleasure and joy – important feelings that make people feel emotionally better. The more you smile, the happier you are. Endorphins, natural pain-killers, are released when we smile, making us feel happier, more relaxed, less stressed and healthier (reduced heart rate, improved blood flow and oxygen, and an increase in white blood cells to help fight infections). Dopamine, a neurotransmitter used in learning, processing and decision-making, is also triggered by happiness, allowing happy, smiling people to be more productive and creative in solving problems.
When you smile, you are seen as more attractive, trustworthy, approachable, warm and kind. The more you smile, the happier other people around you feel.
Swirleez wouldn’t likely have happened if the owner that greeted us at our first self-serve frozen yogurt encounter hadn’t greeted us with a smile. We were drawn in by Becky’s genuine smile and warm personality at The Barking Fish Factory, a cute frozen yogurt shop in Market Town in Myrtle Beach, the concept of which became Swirleez one year later. We mimicked Becky’s warm customer service factor by greeting everyone with a smile and within a few short months, Swirleez became everyone’s Happy Place.
Understanding the value of a smile, we started creating Smile Popsicles this year with our frozen yogurt and a smiling face mold, primarily to help bring a smile to senior residents at nursing homes as they suffered the most from this year’s pandemic. We even started a GoFundMe campaign in November called “Smiles for Seniors” to assist long term care facilities in bringing joy to their residents. So far, we have brought smiles to over 900 nursing home residents from Midland to Newmarket. Seeing their smiling faces makes us happy, too!
Dale Carnegie, author of How to Win Friends and Influence People and master of making friends knew all to well the importance of a smile. He wrote this poem, ‘The Value of a Smile’ in one of his books and it serves as a great reminder of what we should be doing more of at this time of year in business and in life, and especially through this pandemic…because we can.
It costs nothing, but creates much.
It enriches those who receive, without impoverishing those who give.
It happens in a flash and the memory of it sometimes lasts forever.
None are so rich they can get along without it, and none so poor but are richer for its benefits.
It creates happiness in the home, fosters goodwill in a business, and is the countersign of friends.
It is rest to the weary, daylight to the discouraged, sunshine to the sad, and nature’s best antidote for trouble.
Yet it cannot be bought, begged, borrowed or stolen, for it is something that is no earthly good to anyone ’til it is given away.
And if in the hurly-burly bustle of today’s business world, some of the people you meet should be too tired to give you a smile, may we ask you to leave one of yours?
For nobody needs a smile so much as those who have none left to give.
It takes only 17 muscles to smile and 43 to frown — so really, you have no excuse. Put on a happy face!
The world needs your smile today.