Posts Tagged ‘endorphins’

The power of a smile is incredible.  When you see a little baby grin from ear to ear it sure does warm your heart.  When you see a group of people smiling and laughing it seems contagious–kind of like a yawn!  Take a moment and simply smile. Then focus on how it feels and what it does to you physically, emotionally, and mentally.  If it feels good you might think about smiling more often.

Have you ever known someone whose mouth actually was in the shape of a frown 24/7?

Here is a quote from an article in Psychology Today by Sarah Stevenson entitled “There’s Magic in Your Smile.”  Her article helps decipher the mystery of the smile.

“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh

For starters, smiling activates the release of neuropeptides that work toward fighting off stress (3). Neuropeptides are tiny molecules that allow neurons to communicate. They facilitate messaging to the whole body when we are happy, sad, angry, depressed, excited. The feel good neurotransmitters dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin are all released when a smile flashes across your face as well (4). This not only relaxes your body, but it can lower your heart rate and blood pressure.[1]

The endorphins also act as a natural pain reliever – 100% organically and without the potential negative side effects of synthetic concoctions (4). Finally, the serotonin release brought on by your smile serves as an anti-depressant/mood lifter (5).[2]

My dad was one of the happiest people I ever knew.  He smiled and laughed and joked all the time.  Even the message my dad wrote for the answering machine was filled with fun.  Here is what you heard when you called my parents up and they were not at home.

It’s the top of the ninth with two outs and the Bishops at bat, the pitcher throws and the Bishops hit to the short stop, who throws to first and the Bishops are out!  But they will be back shortly so if you leave the time, your name and phone number, they will get back to you shortly.  Thanks for calling and have a happy day with a big smile. Wait for the beep!

You can see he was a great big fan of baseball as well as smiling, joking, and laughing.  How’s that going with you?  What announcement do you have on your voice mail?

In this moment if you want to be healthy and pain free in mind, body, and spirit how about a few more smiles today!  Let me know how that works out!

In gassho,

Mom, Dad, Kathy 2009 59th wedding anniversay

Dad and Mom and Shokai (2009 59th wedding anniversary party)

Three big smiles for sure!


[1] https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cutting-edge-leadership/201206/there-s-magic-in-your-smile

[2] Abel E. and Kruger M. (2010) Smile Intensity in Photographs Predicts Longevity, Psychological Science, 21, 542–544.

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