“A smile is happiness you’ll find right under your nose” ~ Tom Wilson
This year’s theme for Red Nose Day on March 19th was to ‘Share a Smile’. How apt! This year has been challenging for many of us and at times during lockdown it may have felt that there is not much to smile about.
In our last blog we wrote about the arrival of Spring and how this natural seasonal transformation brings us joy and hope. We have since seen warmer weather and the arrival of blossom on the trees, further confirmation of what we have to look forward to as the days unfold.
Soon we will be able to see friends and family in outdoor spaces and bask in our shared care, friendship and enjoyment of one another.
Red Nose Day and Comic Relief is an annual reminder of the power of laughter, as well as the importance of sharing that laughter with others. At Parrys, we had fun taking part in this year’s Red Nose Day and enjoyed some office antics in order to help spread the merriment!
Smiling is a universal sign of happiness. Let us take a moment to reflect on why smiling is so effective.
- Smiling is a natural anti-depressant – When you smile, the movement of the muscles triggers your brain to release neurotransmitters called neuropeptides along with the hormone’s dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins, all of which boost our mood.
- Smiling reduces stress – The afore-mentioned endorphins produced when smiling help alleviate stress by reducing the production of stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Stress affects our happiness, sleep, immune system, and overall sense of wellbeing. Smile your way to relaxation!
- Smiling increases productivity – Studies have found that happiness has positive causal effects on productivity levels. The release of dopamine when you smile has been found to improve decision-making, processing and learning functions which can make you more creative and efficient.
- Smiling improves our immunity – Smiling helps improve your overall health as it encourages the immune system to act more effectively. This is all down to the positive influence relaxation has on our bodies. Our immune system naturally improves when we are relaxed and free from negative stress hormones. Thanks to the release of powerful hormones and neurotransmitters released by smiling our immunity levels are given a boost.
- Smiling is infectious – We are all familiar with the phrase, ‘smile and the world smiles with you’, well it is true! We are naturally drawn to people who smile and are deterred by frowns or expressions of displeasure or anger. Studies have shown that our brains react to other people smiling almost as powerfully as it does to our own smile! The release of the happy hormones mean that we cannot help but smile back – creating a loop of happiness!
We encourage all of you to smile today. Smile at yourself in the mirror, smile at work, smile at your neighbour, and most importantly, smile even when you do not feel like smiling.
We challenge you to see how wonderfully powerful a smile can be!