Smiling: Making it a Practice

SmilesPt3.jpg

As discussed in the previous post, smiling has many benefits, and making it a consistent and intentional practice can bring you those benefits more often and develop into a normal practice. 

START SIMPLY

For me it started very small with just an uptick of the corners of my lips. I still continue this practice often because it reminds me how such a simple action can create change. Unless I am having a really bad day, this has become my new resting face. This was a simple change to make. I practiced just this for a long time, but it eventually developed into more. Growing it into a practice with a bigger smile took a little more effort. 

CREATING YOUR PRACTICE

  1. Choose a time or place you visit often. When I started I was traveling a lot, so I chose the airport. You can also set an alarm to go off during specific time to remind you to practice. 
  2. When you get there or that time approaches, put a broad smile on your face and keep it as long as possible.
  3. Get through those first moments of feeling uncomfortable, and see how long you can sustain that broad smile.
  4. Next time, make it a goal to smile a little longer than you did the previous time.
  5. Repeat as often as possible.

GROWING YOUR PRACTICE

This practice can translate to almost any activity, and you can choose more times and activities as you grow your practice. I like to smile while running and doing yoga; it adds an element of joy to the activity. My favorite is to practice smiling at other people whereever I am: at the store, out on the trail, on video calls, and even while driving. 

I may not practice smiling all day everyday, but I do make an effort to smile more than not to experience the benefits it provides. 

As Amanda Mausner in her Disrupt Your Comfort Zone challenge says: 

It's challenging to be friendly and open to others. It's difficult to bring kindness to the world. Especially to strangers. 

So tomorrow: smile at everyone. Smile when it feels awkward. Smile when it doesn't make sense. Smile so much that your face hurts. Smile that you make someone question what you're doing. 

I want you to feel awkward and weird. That's the whole point. Go so over and beyond that you radiate kindness and genuine friendliness to everyone that you encounter. 

I hope you can find the benefits to practice smiling! Give it a shot today, tomorrow, and perhaps everyday!

:-) :-D

Subscribe to the Unbind the Heart Newsletter!!

Related Posts:

Smile Practice