A small child smiles nearly 400 times a day. That’s a lot of grinning, right? The smiles taper off as they grow, and by the time they reach adulthood, they’re smiling a mere 17 times per day. I read that quick fact in The Happiness Project, and I’ve been pondering ways to recover some of the 383 smiles; where did they go, and how do we get them back?
So, this might seem tangental, but I got to thinking about how much time I spend repeating, over and over, “milk, shampoo, bread, butter.” A little thing, sure, but it requires a lot of mental repetition to make sure I don’t forget any of the items. And what a silly thing to focus on, right?
I decided to design ‘market stationary’ that reminded me not only of bread & butter, but also (cheesy as it is) ‘love each other.’ The additional bit about loving one another seems more worthy of headspace than market knick knacks.
While I was preparing this post, I came across some other interesting facts about smiling:
- UC Berkeley found that yearbook smiles are reliable predicators of future happiness, marriage stability and interpersonal success.
- Wayne State University found that baseball card smiles predict the span of a player’s life.
- We are born smiling.
Now, tell me, do you have any strategies for making yourself or others smile?