Your Happiness Factor:celebrating happiness, prosperity, hearth and home, good health.

Monday, 13 February 2012

The Power of Your Smile

Eye contactEye contact (Photo credit: Gabriela Sellart)
To be happy, we need to feel recognized and acknowledged by others. This helps us to feel part of a group and we all need that for our well-being. 


If we feel unrecognized and excluded, we can feel miserable and we can go on to feel stressed.


But the recognition and acknowledgement we need can be as simple as a smile or even as little as eye contact alone.


The journal of the Association of Psychological Science, Psychological Science, has published a study that demonstrates how important a very simple acknowledgement can be.


Eric.D.Wesselmann of Purdue University carried out a study with colleagues at the University. The study tested the effect of very simple eye contact between a research assistant and people on a well-used path on the campus.


The research assistant didn't even need to smile to have a notable effect.  Those with whom the assistant made eye contact were questioned afterwards and commented that they felt less disconnected, even though the research assistat was a stranger.


We all need to feel connected to others for our happiness and our well-being.  But how often do we ourselves share the gift of our attention, as we go about our daily lives?  It is so easy for us to find ourselves totally preoccupied with our own thoughts.


We don't stay present in the moment and often we don't even notice those about us. So we don't make others feel they are people of note by acknowledging them.


Now, we have no excuse.  We know that we carry a very powerful gift - the gift of our attention.  So give someone a present - spread a litle happiness today and do a little good!  Make eye contact with those about you and share your smile.

Wendy Mason is a Life and Career Coach. She works with all kinds of people going through many different kinds of personal and career change. She offers coaching by phone and Skype as well as face to face, particularly for those wanting to increase their confidence. If you would like to know more you can contact Wendy at wendymason@confidencecoach.me  or ring ++44 (0)2084610114.  Her Skype ID is wendymason14.