According to new research this is what makes us happiest
It will come as no surprise that we are naturally drawn to people who smile. Those who smile are definitely more physically attractive but is there more to the act of a grin than meets the eye?
Invisalign®*, the market leader in clear aligners, surveyed 2,000 people to find out what makes them happy – the findings might surprise you. It turns out it’s not money or likes that puts a smile on our dials most but the little things.
RELATED: My Invisalign journey: Part one
Read on for the most interesting discoveries to come out of the study...
Smiling can make you happy…for real
Next time you’re not feeling 100 try putting on a smile! Of those questioned, 8 in 10 admitted they felt happier when they smiled. The physical act of smiling activates mood-boosting neurotransmitters like endorphins in the brain, which can trick the body into an elevated mood.
Saturday is our happiest day of the week
It will come as no surprise that Saturday, a weekend day, is collectively our happiest day of the week. In fact, just finishing the work week conjures up a smile in 39 percent of people, perhaps why 4-5pm on a Friday is our overall happiest time of the week #relatable.
72% of respondents feel happy at work
The research seems to have uncovered the biggest misconception about work: as much as we love to knock it, we’re actually pretty happy…we just hate to admit it :P Those who took part in the research cited sociable colleagues (54%), a positive environment (47%) and like-minded colleagues (37%) as the reasons they smile in the workplace.
Sure we have our off days but for the most part we're pretty happy at work / Credit Miss FQ
Coffee can trigger a smile
Anyone else look forward to their morning coffee? Perhaps it’s catching up with co-workers around the espresso machine or maybe it’s just the caffeine hit itself but the research revealed coffee makes 39% happy! Those beans are powerful stuff.
Best friends make us smile the most
Moreover family, children, pets and even comedians, it’s our bffs that make us smile the most. Aww!
BRB *texts BFF* / Credit Miss FQ
80% of people aren’t satisfied with how much they smile
A third surveyed consider themselves happier than they were five years ago and on average we’re smiling 20 times a day – great results all pointing in the right direction, but 80 percent of respondents still wish they smiled more!
So, what can we do about it?
“It’s interesting to see we’re becoming increasingly happy and many feel happier when they smile more frequently, yet many wish they smiled more,” remarks psychologist Jaimie Bloch.
If you’ve never sent a bunch of flowers or handwritten note, don’t worry you’re not alone – over a third of respondents confessed they’ve neglected such gestures too, highlighting we really could be doing more to make others smile.
5 simple ways to make people (and yourself) smile
Lighting up someone’s day doesn’t have to be hard or cost money.
1. Compliment someone
Society has changed considerably over the last decade. New technology and social media has raised concerns that we no longer feel fulfilled by what inherently once made us happy. However, Invisalign’s® research revealed that a real-life compliment still trumps a ‘like’ on social media...phew.
2. Smile at everyone you see today
Smile and the whole world smiles with you, or so the saying goes. The research findings attest to the notion that smiling is contagious. It’s a domino effects - you truly can spread positive vibes by radiating happiness yourself.
3. Tell or show someone you love them
Doing simple acts of kindness for strangers or loved ones can make you and them happy. Make a conscious effort to communicate your love for those around you and showing them you care. It can be as simple as filling up your colleagues drink bottle on your next kitchen run or kissing your partner before leaving for work.
4. Think yourself happy
Our attitude is heavily influenced by our mood. By thinking happy thoughts, we are more likely to generate a smile that can boost our own wellbeing and happiness.
For many confidence in their smile is a huge barrier. If you shy away from smiling you might not be reaping all the other above benefits that come with it. With 62% of adults wanting to improve their smile it’s a shared struggle. However, it doesn’t need to be the struggle it once was. Many adults think it’s too late to improve their smile or don’t want chunky braces to interfere with their lifestyle.
Invisalign®, the most advanced clear aligner system in the world, has treated over 7.2 million patients worldwide to date (including our very own Kate!).
Developed alongside orthodontists, Invisalign® is a clear and removable alternative to braces used in dental practices around the world.
Visit www.invisalign.co.nz for more information.
*Study conducted on behalf of Invisalign® Australia with Australian participants.
Main image: Miss FQ Issue 1. Photography Jono Parker
What makes you smile most?