Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Smiling Is Good For Your Health


Smiling is good for you! It can actually change your mood. I have to warn you about something though ... smiling can be contagious. Have you ever seen someone enter a room with a big smile on their face? They can light up the whole room!

The reality of our day is that there are some very real challenges ahead. Turn on the TV and watch the news and it can be enough to get anybody depressed and stressed.

But remember, we may not be able to control all of the stress and circumstances in our lives but ... we have the choice as to how we will respond.

Did you know that the simple act of smiling actually helps to relax your body and can even lower your blood pressure? I'd say that's a good thing. The muscles we use to smile tend to lift our faces. At my age, I like that.

“A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.” Phyllis Diller

“Wrinkles should merely indicate where smiles have been.” Mark Twain

Smiling tends to make you more attractive. Think about it? What attracts you more? A peson who wears a perpetual frown or someone who is often smiling? Frankly, I think there's enough pain and difficulty in this world without choosing to spend time with people who are always unhappy or at least look that way.

However, I'm not advocating living in denial. There is a time and a season for everything. In the Bible, the third chapter of Ecclesiastes says that there is "a season for every activity under heaven ...a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance...". Maybe this is a season of very real challenges for you.

I met Eileen when I was working as a cardiac nurse. Eileen had some major health issues that often required visits to the emergency room and frequent hospitalizations. But in the midst of her many life threatening issues, she always seemed to manage a smile. She told me that she didn't want to lose her sense of humor. And every time I spent time with Eileen, I found myself smiling.


My mother was another great example. She could light up an entire room with her smile. No matter how much pain she was experiencing, she always seemed to have a joke to share and would find delight in the simplest of things.


What makes you smile?

Getting totally drenched with your sister?

Cuddling a furry animal?
Getting a new haircut?
Playing with your big sister?
Riding a horse?

Holding something very special?

Playing dressup with your grandchild?
Welcoming your new baby sister?

Spending time with your grandchildren?

Spending time with your dad?

Training a new puppy named Harley?

This time in history is a very challenging time. And no matter who wins the Presidential election, there's still much work to be done. I guess with all the hand wringing and worrying going on, I wanted to ask you to take a moment and focus on something that makes you smile.

I invite you to go ahead and do it now and then add a comment telling me what makes you smile.

15 comments:

  1. SMILE!

    Yes, something I value too. And something I take lots of pictures of.

    Great..

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  2. I heard somewhere that it takes more energy and muscles to frown than it does to smile! So smiling is much less work than frowning - who would have thought ;)

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  3. Dear Debbie,
    you are right again. Smiling is contagious.How can one look at a smiling child and not smile back, or watch a kitten or a puppy play.
    I brightens my day, that's for sure.
    Guess I will get more conscious that I smile more and often when I am round and about.
    A good reminder. Thank you.
    From Felisol

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  4. This post made me smile! :-)

    Aside from my family and Jesus, a nap, a beautiful pedicure, a new tube of toothpaste, and a cup of Hazelnut coffee also make me smile.

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  5. Love the Mark Twain quote. Now I can smile when I see my laugh lines!

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  6. Debbie,

    My husband can light up an entire city with his beautiful smile! I love that about him so much! This was a great post.

    Thanks for checking in on me. I'm better today. ((hugs)) to you!

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  7. Great post. I'm smiling as I sit here responding. Among other things, my daughters make me smile. They can be so funny, and they are growing into such beautiful women. They make my heart smile, and that's a really great feeling.

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  8. I LOVE this post and I totally believe this is true. What makes me smile? Other people being happy, it is contiagous.

    Did you know that sitting up straight helps too? There is an interesting book called Spark, by John Ratey, about the biochemistry of this.

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  9. Debbie,
    Smiling is often a response, but also a conscious choice! Today, I'm choosing to SMILE. The Joy of the Lord is my Strength -- and that makes me Smile!
    Thanks for reminding us!

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  10. Debbie,
    Just recently I started smiling on purpose- especially when I am angry and I know my eyebrows are V shaped right above my nose. Anyway, when you smile when you are angry I think you release seritonin or endorphines something like that and you can almost feel them being secreted. It almost hurts at first to smile when you don't feel like it but it gets easier : )

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  11. There is a site, Smile My Day that features an array of different types of smiles. You can't visit that site and not smile, and I agree - smiling can change your own mood, and that of those around you. :)

    ~ Kristi

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  12. I could have used some smiling friends today! I'm one weary and welll-spent pilgrim. Praying for rest and perspective and lots of smiles in the morrow!

    peace~elaine
    PS: I pulled out my Billy Blank's tapes this past weekend and did one. Now I know why I need to get rid of them. Can barely move!

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  13. Debbie,

    I love this saying - smile and leave them wondering what is making you so happy!

    Smiling is one of our favorite things to do around here - we have so many reasons to smile - God LOVES us!

    Blessings tonight!
    Jill

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  14. I love it : )
    Thanks for sharing!

    I couldn't help but smile as I read your post.

    I just stopped by to say hello!

    It's nice to 'meet' you!

    Julie

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  15. Such wonderful wisdome here. I like this post so much. Thank you!

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I love to read your comments! I know you have something to share so join in the conversation. And thank you for taking the time.

Am I a kid or what?

Am I a kid or what?

I love this place...Carmel, CA

I love this place...Carmel, CA