Central Idea: You can effect positive changes in your life and in the lives of others using a tool you have with you all the time, your smile.
I. “I’m going to walk to the bridge. If one person smiles at me on the way, I will not jump” (New Yorker). This is a suicidal note left in the bureau of a man who jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge. It was found by the FBI and psychiatrist, while trying to put together the pieces of why this man took his own life. According to the article, Jumpers written in the New Yorker, this man walked all the way to the bridge and not one person smiled. II. Do you ever smile at someone randomly? Or do you only offer a smile or a hello to someone you know? A smile could mean the world to a person. To this man, it meant his life. III. The people that passed by him did what they were supposed to do, but not what they needed to do. Those who walked by this man didn’t do anything wrong, but they didn’t do anything right either. Like most of us would do, how would they know this man was going to jump off? IV. The good news is that we are born smiling. Babies smile naturally and smiling is one of the most basic biological expression of humans, as mentioned by Susan Quilliam in the book Body Language. V. Everyone should make an effort to smile more on their day to day lives. a. It’s as simple as smiling at people as you are on your way to class or smiling at someone while standing in line at the store. i. I can think of a few times that I smiled at someone who was coming onto an elevator that I was already on and the awkward elevator silence was avoided simply because I smiled at someone. VI. Facial expressions are the way our brains move the muscles in our faces to express the way we feel. As mentioned at www.ecology.com, we raise our eyebrows in surprise, we lower our eyelids in shyness, and we smile with happiness (Stallings). VII. Smiling can save your life, help you look your best, and maximize potential happiness.
Transition/Connective: First we will look at how smiling can save your life. BODY
I. Research shows that people can effect enormous positive changes in their lives and in the lives of others using a tool they have with them all the times, their smiles. a. In addition to his theory of evolution, Charles Darwin was also well known for his facial feedback theory developed in 1872 (Mann). b. The theory states that the act of smiling itself actually makes us feel good as opposed to smiling as a result of feeling good. i. Next time you are feeling down, try putting a smile on your face and see what happens. c. Smiling can improve your mood.
i. According to Cliff Kuhn, a medical doctor known as the laugh doctor, smiling can help elevate the mood of patients with depression. ii. Even faking a smile can improve their mood. d. An article in Smart Living shared a study that was done regarding pictures and smiling (Gottberg). e. The study looked into measuring the smiles on pre-1950’s major league baseball players on old baseball cards. The research showed that the span of the players smile could actually predict lifespan. The wider the smile the longer they lived. i. The size of the smile added nearly 8 years to the player’s life. f. Besides living longer, a lot of smiling reduce stress hormones, increase mood-enhancing hormones and reduces overall blood pressure (Stibich). g. We all have the power to smile, using new high tech ultrasound technology it was found that babies can actually smile in the womb (Walton). h. Even blind babies smile proving they aren’t just mimicking their parent’s facial expressions but that smiling is a universally correct expression of pleasure, which David Matsumoto touches on at the website www.apa.org, where he along with others conduct research...