My session with Doc today was surprisingly awesome.
We started talking about OKCupid and how I’ve completely revamped my profile, basically lifting my recent blog post about my disappointment with the site and pasting it into my profile, including the list of minimum qualifications.
My daily message count has drop significantly, but I’m actually pretty good with that. The quality coming my way most days was meh.
After talking about OKC, we transitioned into talking about happiness.
I watched a bunch of TED Talks last night, one of which was seven minutes just on the power of smiling.
Smiling lifts your mood, is a stress reliever, and can make you seem more appealing to the opposite sex.
Doc found it interesting that of all the TED Talks I could’ve watched, I happened upon that one.
And then I got my homework for this week: smiling.
Doc encouraged me to smile at random times in the day. He asked me to try to take fifteen to thirty minutes where I just plaster a smile on my face and leave it there. He suggested I do it at home, in case I was worried about seeming odd while out and about. This act alone, he posited, would be enough to lift my overall mood.
Doc also suggested a smiling exercise throughout my day. If I came upon a stressful situation, he asked me to smile, take a deep breath in, sigh out, and speak what word or words fit the situation. He encouraged me to develop a mantra of my own for my smile-sigh practice.
The point of the exercise is for me to re-train my brain to deal with stress and negative moments and emotions, to learn to slow down, relax, and process, to find a way to get through without letting the situation overcome me.
With that in mind, I turn that homework over to all of you. Why don’t you, my amazing readers, try heeding my Doc’s advice?
Smile more. Smile often. Take a moment, when something gets tough or seemingly overwhelming, to just stop, smile, sigh, and maybe just say “fuck it” or “okay” or “I’ll get through”.
How much better could your life be if you just choose to make yourself happier? If you choose to try to be a bit brighter. Or, and this is the best part, if you just fool your brain into believing that you are indeed happy. Turns out, according to Doc, that the emotional part of our brains are pretty stupid. If you just smile, right now, for no good reason, and leave that plastered on your face for a minute, you will feel happier. Your brain will think, “Hey, I guess I’m happy because I’m smiling.”
So try it. Who knows? You might turn into a smiling happy fool. And wouldn’t the world be just a little bit better with a few more of those in our lives?
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