A smile is not just important because, as the song goes, you're never fully dressed without one. Turns out a smile is an important part of our professional presence and, thanks to mirror neurons, key to building business relationships. But it's not just because of sunshiney, rose-colored-glasses thoughts- it's science!
The folks at Stuff to Blow Your Mind have done it again with their video on the science of smiling. The fact is, those little mirror neurons in our brain love to activate mimicry. Because of that, when we see someone smile it is nearly impossible not to smile back. Also, as Julie points out, smiles are a potent form of non-verbal communication- a "social contract" that we all accept as a signal that everything is fine.
Smiling is vital to your professional communication skills for these reasons and more. Not only will it up your relationship building skills by triggering a smiling response from the person with whom you are speaking (or your audience, if you're giving a professional presentation), but it can also have a "fake it 'til you make it" effect on your own well being. Wouldn't you rather be the positive person in the room than the perpetual rain cloud?
Take a look at the video, and tell us what your feel about smiling in the comments below. (Try not to get depressed about the statistic that children smile 400 times a day, while adults only smile 20 times on average.. just smile about it...)
Thanks again to How Stuff Works and Stuff to Blow the Mind for another great video!