Doesn’t it feel good to smile! I often wonder why people don’t do more things that make them smile. Smiles are universal. They say, “I’m happy”. They say “hello”. A smile can even tell you that a meal was absolutely delicious. Did you know that smiling can change your mood? It’s true! It is a scientific fact that smiling prods a chemical reaction that takes place in your brain.
There is a neurotransmission that takes place where a chemical called Dopamine is released by neurons to send signals to certain nerve cells in our brain. This chemical, along with another chemical called Serotonin, is released into a very distinct pathway that sends it to the part of your brain that plays a major role in your emotions. Dopamine increases our feelings of happiness. Serotonin reduces stress. To me, having stress freeing happy chemicals that are naturally produced by our bodies is reason enough to smile. It’s like having an automatic reset button.
Even a fake smile can put this process in motion! Apparently, it is the moving of the facial muscles along with the bones in our faces that gets the happy train in motion. It’s like a brain trick! For all your brain knows, those bones and muscles are in full “engage dopamine” mode and they must engage. Your brain is not going to send any neurons to investigate the validity of a smile. It’s going to engage, PERIOD!
I don’t know about you but knowing this has brought awareness to the power that our bodies possess and I’m excited to use it intentionally. It’s just a matter of choosing to be happy. I always say that happiness is a choice because, spiritually, I know that I am responsible for what I allow in my personal space. Now, I know that it has also been scientifically proven! I know and trust God, so this information was just a bonus to my human self.
I hope that knowing this empowers you as well!