Our yoga practice is something that has developed for 1000’s of years and comes to us from all corners of our beautiful earth.  As we seek out happiness in our lives, we can tap into something that was around before yoga was even a consideration.

Since the dawn of man, smiling has been with us.  We smile when we walk, when we watch TV, when we listen to the radio, and when we take yoga classes.  A smile goes a long way, and when we smile at people as we walk down the street we share a little bit of our heart with others, and can spread joy in the world.

Sometimes when we feel a little down if we can remember to smile, we can change our minds in a positive way.

Zen Buddhism teaches us to smile even if we do not want to smile.
In the USA a statement often shared is “Fake it until you make it.”

These ideas suggest that maybe if we smile at times when it is difficult we may find positive results from this practice.

There are many reasons to smile, and here is a list of a few

1.  When we smile we become more beautiful.
2.  When we smile we feel better no matter the mood (try it and see).
3.  Smiling is contagious.
4.  Smiling makes us look younger.
5.  Smiling strengthens the human bodies ability to fight sickness.
6.  It is very difficult to have negative thoughts while smiling.
7.  Studies show smiling increases levels of Serotonin.

And if you are hard to be convinced, here are a few quotes to help to convince you to try smiling (right now as you read this email).

Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.

- Thich Nhat Hanh

If you smile you can change yourself, others and your future.”

- Japanese proverb

“What can take away All our inner poison? Just one smile.”

- Sri Chinmoy

So next time you are walking down the street, try smiling.  When you are working in front of your computer smile to get more done.  Before you go to bed tonight try to smile and see if it can help to settle your mind.