World Smile Day is upon us. While many people weren’t aware that we need an official day to muster up a smile, it seems like with all the chaos going on in the world, the reminder doesn’t hurt.
World Smile Day is the brainchild of famed “smiley face” artist Harvey Ball. Ball created the smiley face artwork back in 1963. The yellow smile has gone on to be one of the most iconic symbols of all time, becoming the very staple with which we communicate these days via text message and social media.
Ball noted that while the smiley face was intended to bring joy and happiness to the world, he feared its overuse would result in it becoming a symbol of complacency rather than happiness. As a result, according to the World Smile Day website, Ball created “World Smile Day” in 1999, a recurring holiday that would come on the first Friday of October. Ball’s hope was that at least on this one day a year, the world could set aside all politics, world problems, and animosities, and simply find a reason to make each other smile.
While some may find it difficult to muster up a smile in the wake of a volatile presidential election, violence, hurricanes, and all of the other wrongs going on in the world, we thought we could offer up some encouraging things to help you bare your teeth in a good way. Let’s accentuate the positive!
Though the Presidential Election is causing strife amongst you and your friends, smile because it’s almost over!
Sure we’ve all felt the stress over the election. Regardless of whether you are for Trump or Clinton or still waiting for Ashton Kutcher to pop out and tell us we’ve all been Punk’d, we’ve all experienced the negativity associated with the presidential race. But there is reason to smile. No, we aren’t going to agree with Dr. Seuss on this matter with his contention of “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened,” but in just a few weeks, the election will be over. And though half of the country will be dismayed over who ends up in the oval office, at least we won’t be subjected to the inundation of political ads on TV and it’s possible you might even like your friends again.
Even when things seem to be at their worst, we can find something positive.
While it seems the media often covers the worst of the worst, let’s focus today on the best of a bad situation. Though a hurricane converged on Florida and even the happiest place on earth, Disney World, had to be closed for World Smile Day, one of the greediest corporate entities had a short term change of heart. Airlines were promoting acts of kindness by waiving change fees for people fleeing the storm in the region. According to Fortune, at least seven airlines opted to have compassion for those affected by the storm. Sure that might not seem like a big deal, but for anyone that travels, we know how stingy those airlines can be.
And if that wasn’t the good news you were hoping would make you smile, here’s something a little more inspirational. Shannen Doherty, the actress who is still undergoing chemotherapy for her battle with breast cancer, posted a video to her Instagram of her channeling her inner warrior to battle the after effects and shake her booty at the gym.
Surely if Shannen can find a reason to be uplifted and smile, so can you.
The Holidays are just around the corner.
Yes, the holidays can be a stressful time for people as they gather up the money for presents and consider hanging out with relatives, however, according to Statista, a statistical research website, the majority of Americans list Christmas as their favorite holiday. There is something to be said for the joy of giving. Even if Black Friday shopping and overeating aren’t your list of favorite things, a lot of people enjoy the holiday movies from the classic It’s a Wonderful Life to Elf. And what’s Elf’s favorite thing? Smiling.
When you smile the world smiles back at you. Be the good.
According to a study released in the journal Trends in Cognitive Sciences, research suggests that smiling is contagious. Sure there are all kinds of contagious things floating around this time of year from the common cold to strep throat, but why not be the change you want to see and share something just as contagious — a smile? Smiling in response to a smile is an indication that you’re able to participate in a fundamental social interaction within society. The research also revealed that the simply act of smiling elevates your mood.
If you still haven’t found a reason to smile, here are some cute videos that might help you get through World Smile Day with an actual grin.
Still haven’t found your happy face for World Smile Day? Well maybe these viral videos can help.
This dad built a kid-sized America Ninja Warrior course for his little girl and then narrated her going through it:
These dogs who refused to leave the pet store:
This cat that everyone will want to adopt (or not):
Did you find a reason to smile for World Smile Day? Tell us your experience!
[Featured Image by Thinkstock.]