“A smile is your greatest social asset”- Zig Ziglar
A smile is one of the most universal expressions of happiness, and it’s also one of the first things people notice about someone else. That’s why your smile is your most valuable asset – it conveys who you are to others before they even have a chance to speak to you. Why else is your smile so important?
Genuine smiles convey an openness to interact as well as a level of friendliness. Within your career, smiling can show confidence, and reliability to your boss as well as coworkers. People usually recognize smiles faster than any other facial feature. A study conducted by Mila Mileva at the University of New York explored this idea further. She found that people participating in the study had an easier time matching images of the same person who was smiling, as opposed to having a neutral facial expression. These results also increased when participants were asked to distinguish between two similar looking people who were both smiling. This further proves that people analyze and remember a smile of a person they meet more than any other identifying feature.
When you smile, a release of dopamine, the happy hormone, is triggered. Research shows that even if the smile is fake and you are not actually feeling happy in the moment, it still activates the same parts of your immune system and body’s response. If you want to know more health benefits from smiling, check out our article, What are the Benefits of Smiling and Laughing?
Relationship building develops over time, however, having a positive first impression can go a long way. A study done by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry shows that 50 percent of interviewees will remember your smile vs what you wore. It has also been shown that the confidence that comes from smiling with a nice smile leads to more job offers. You don’t need to have perfect teeth to smile. Most aspects of seeming approachable are all about confidence within that first impression with somebody.
The next time you’re feeling down, or find yourself in a challenging situation, remember your smile, it may be your most valuable asset. A smile has the power to change not only your mood, but also the mood of those around you. When it comes to relationship building and first impressions, it can make all the difference in the world. So don’t forget to flash those pearly whites – they could help you more than you think!