The power of a smile

Several years ago I remember reading that your income will be the average of your 5 best friends. I found this to be a bit unsettling. Upon some serious reflection I came to realize that be it income, happiness or anything else in life you can learn a lot about yourself by looking at who you hang out with.

A paper in the British Medical Journal entitled, “Dynamic Spread of Happiness in a Large Social Network” describes this even further.

They did a study looking at a group of 1700 college students interconnected on Facebook. They reviewed the online profiles, determining closest friends and who was smiling and who was not. The non-smilers are located more peripherally on the network, primarily on the outskirts of the map. Those who smile are measurably more central to the network. It thus seems to be the case, online as well as offline, that when you smile, the world smiles with you. There is a simple –phenomenon: when you smile, we are letting people know we are happy to be with them, happy to meet them, happy to be interacting with them. They in turn feel happier to be dealing with you. To someone who has seen a dozen people frown, scowl, or turn faces away, your smile is like the sun breaking through the clouds. Your smile is often the first message of your goodwill.

So how powerful is your attitude and smile? It can redefine you!

As for increasing your influence and income, smile and smile some more…and maybe even consider developing some new friendships in a higher income bracket 🙂