As a kid, I attached valuable baseball cards to the spokes of my bike to make the sound of a motorcycle. Not everyone was destroying future investments. Researchers at Wayne State University examined photos of two hundred and fifty baseball players prior to 1950. They analyzed the smile or lack of smiles. Those that displayed no smile lived to 72.9 years old. Those with partial smiles lived to the age of 75. Players with big smiles lived on average to 79.9 years old. Coincidence? Perhaps.
When you flash a genuine smile at someone, the results are always positive. Studies widely reported without accreditation concluded that people who smile frequently are seen as being more confident and successful and are more likely to strike up conversations with strangers if they are smiling, and bosses are more likely to promote people who smile a lot. The last one did not work for me. The bottom line is that smiles generate a positive response.
Remember the story we have all heard that it takes so many muscles to smile and a lot more to create a frown? The numbers of muscles used are all over the place, leading one to believe that no one really knows, but I know I feel better when I smile. Even when I am blue and someone is able to elicit a smile, I feel just a tad better for that moment. Smiles are usually reciprocated. The act of smiling releases the feel good endorphins from the brain, which leads to making us feel happier. Dr. Paul Ekman from the University of California at San Francisco and University of Wisconsin neuroscientist Richard Davidson, used brain scans to show that smiling activates some parts of the brain associated with pleasure and happiness.
Just imagine the effects your smiles will have on your conversational partner. If your smile and enthusiasm makes them smile, they will feel the energy exploding through their body. Smiles are so important for establishing rapport.
Keep smiling and live longer!!!
For more tips on developing rapport, take a look at FACE 2 FACE : Observation, Interviewing and Rapport Building Skills: an Ex-Secret Service Agent’s Guide http://www.amazon.com/Face-2-ebook/dp/B009991BII/ref=sr_1_6?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1354630000&sr=1-6