I once worked a job that had me on the phone frequently. I had to speak to irate people about an array of annoying topics, I won't bore you with here. I felt angry and exhausted by the end of each call. A colleague noted my temperament and made a suggestion that I remember to this day. Smile.
From that point on, I spoke on the phone with a smile, even if I had to force it. The results were surprising. People treated me more kindly, and I was calm after each call.
Smiles can go a long way. Ron Gutman reviewed studies about smiling and found that a smile can predict how long you will live. British researchers have found that one smile can provide the same level of brain stimulation as up to 2,000 chocolate bars.
Smiling is also contagious, even when expressed over the phone. In Stanley Gordon West's, Growing an Inch, he famously wrote, “Smile and the world smiles with you, cry and you cry alone.”
What are you waiting for? The next time you are at a networking event and you don't know a person in the room, try starting with a smile. Heck, walk down the street and smile at strangers, at the very least they will return the smile. Spread the word on Facebook that you are celebrating Smile Power Day. You may want to get started today. :)