There is perhaps nothing more powerful in beginning a conversation, or in overcoming an interpersonal challenge, than a smile. A warm, genuine, sincere smile that emanates from your heart (from the inside out).
The vast majority of these challenges in both personal and in business relationships could most likely be resolved peacefully with a smile, followed by genuine concern for the other’s needs. The fact that most people don’t do this will only make it easier for you to find yourself ahead in the game.
When you must speak with someone’s supervisor about a particular challenge, your smile will bring down his or her walls of resistance, and set the tone for a pleasant, win/win discussion and positive result. One main reason is that you’ve just separated yourself from practically everyone else whose greeting is a defensive, angry, or intimidating look.
In his book, Working With Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman writes, “It happens that smiles are the most contagious emotional signal of all, having an almost irresistible power to make other people smile in return.”
Very true! Read any good book on people skills and there will be at least a mention of the power of a smile.
John Mason, author of Let Go of Whatever Makes You Stop writes, “One of the single most powerful things you can do to influence others is to smile at them.” Dale Carnegie devoted an entire segment of his classic, How To Win Friends & Influence People to this single fact.
Don’t feel badly if this does not come naturally for you. For some, it takes practice. Fortunately, it’s very easy to learn how to smile effectively. If necessary, simply imagine something that truly brings you joy and think of that before you need to smile. After a few practice sessions, you’ll be able to bring forth that smile naturally, “from the inside out.”
It seems very few people smile without a particular reason. But that doesn’t have to include you. Get that smile on your face before you deal with anyone; the service person, government bureaucrat, your boss, the waitperson, your spouse and children; everyone. Get yourself ready for that person to like you and smile back at you!
You can employ this simple action everyday with incredible results. You’ll be delighted (sometimes, astounded!) by the special, over-the-top assistance you’ll so often receive… just because the person is so positively affected by your smile.
Today, while feeling grateful for all your blessings, let them bring a smile to your face.
A smile “from the inside out.” 🙂