What would happen if you smiled at everyone tomorrow? What if you woke up and smiled at the man in the mirror? Smiled at the barista, the crossing guard, heck the student driver that cuts you off? How would this change you? How could you benefit from this experience?
First, think about your natural reaction to seeing a baby or favorite pet. What do you do? I smile and in a cracking high pitched voice say, “aww aren’t you cute!” Dale Carnegie in “How to Win Friends & Influence People” states, “If you want to make a good first impression, smile!” The psychology of this idea is reinforced in Guy Kawasaki’s “Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions” when he defines, “Smiling is the key to people liking you because it says I ACCEPT you. You must accept them before they will accept you. Once mutual acceptance through a smile is reached you are on your way to likeability and trustworthiness which are the foundations of being enchanting.” For example, I’m sitting at Starbucks writing this piece and a gal just walked through. I simply smiled and she smiled back with no words exchanged. She went off to grab a hot tea and came over and sat next to me and asked, “Is that a Macbook Pro or Air?” Acceptance was reached with a smile and common interest was engaged with her looking to buy a laptop. Of course, the 15 minute conversation was nothing about Starbucks or Laptops but turned into a business opportunity.
There is a positive side effect to smiling and that is that it may result in positive emotions and a free sense of joy. Bummer!!! ;P
“Miracle Morning” by Hal Elrod, articulates how you can set yourself up to smile daily. He explains the importance of waking up with energy and purpose. How? You can do this by setting your phone/alarm clock on the other side of the room so you have to physically get out of bed to turn it off without hitting the snooze button. Next, Hal says to go brush your teeth immediately so that you start your day fresh and awakened. The third step is to stimulate your body by drinking the biggest glass of water you can pour in the kitchen. Dehydration is a main cause for not smiling because it makes you feel tired and grumpy. Once you implement the phone, teeth, and water you can begin his six step formula abbreviated here for you: 1) silence 2) affirmations 3) visualization 4) exercise 5) reading 6) writing. Spend one minute with each of these and you will be smiling in 10 minutes! What does this six minute approach look like? Finish your water and sit in silence and/or pray for one minute. Give yourself affirmations of how amazing you really are (1 min). Visualize how successful your day will be (1 min). Do push ups and/or sit ups (1 min). Read a page from a book (1 min) and then write down what a successful day will feel like (1 min).
Here I’ve expressed a few tid bits from the books I’ve recently read and how they are all connected to smiling. I’ve also shown you how Hal has given a simple 10 minute formula to start smiling if you struggle with it.
Finally, I’ll leave you with some Do’s and Don’t’s from Dale Carnegie for after you’ve smiled and started a conversation. Do be interested and appreciative in what they have to say. If you want to be interesting you first have to be interested! Do say their name often. People naturally feel like they’re the most important thing in the world because THEY ARE! Listen to them and they will listen to you! Accept them and they will accept you back with a smile. Do admit you are wrong whenever applies ASAP and publicly criticize yourself because it is ten times worse when someone else does so for you! Do avoid arguments because no one wins but if you must provide a humble approach. For example, say, “Help me understand it your way” or “Imagine it were this way, what would you think?” Don’t criticize them because people naturally will forget your argument and block you out for lowering their self-esteem.
Being authentic, transparent, and genuine with a smile can do wonders for your day and are time tested strategies for a successful day but don’t take it from me try Carnegie, Elrod, & Kawasaki! 🙂
CHEERS TO HEALTH & HAPPINESS!!
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