Smiling my way through the kitchen

Smiling is good. Laughter is said to be great for your health and most of the time, people like associating themselves with happy people because it makes sense – being with someone happy will give you good vibes!

not the most flattering photo but this is what I look like when I laugh

You can choose to smile and be positive about bad situations or you can choose to frown and be upset – so why not choose the happier path? This is really cliché but I personally think it’s true. 

What I have realised recently is that, a smile on your face actually makes a huge difference in your mindset and attitude towards a stressful situation. It’s something simple but a study has shown that smiling actually does help!

There have been so many events in the past many months for me in the kitchen where I just wanted to quit. The pressure has been immense. It’s mostly from myself for wanting to do my best but it’s pressure nonetheless, no matter the source.

Prior to my “discovery”, I’d always have a “stressed face” on during difficult situations, especially at work. It usually goes from feeling overwhelmed, to moving frantically, to speaking really fast and I’ll know that I’m really stressed out if I get a vomiting sensation and if I end up crying. Yep, sometimes it does get that bad. 

I couldn’t deal with stress properly. My thoughts become cloudy and it affected my judgements. It ends up with me being unable to complete even the simplest tasks logically and obviously, that added more pressure to my already stressed out self. 

Recently though, I’ve been smiling a lot more even in situations I find stressful and it makes a big difference. Not only am I able to organise myself and my thoughts better, I’ve also been able to achieve more and produce work of a better quality.

I find that smiling actually has the effect of calming myself down and a calm self is the solution to well organised thoughts. Once my thoughts are no longer messy, I could think more logically and my heart doesn’t beat that fast anymore.

With a normal heart rate, I feel that I don’t move around frantically (also unnecessarily) anymore in high stress situations and it adds to the overall effect of stress relief. That’s not to say that I no longer feel any stress at work but it means that I can handle myself a lot better now.

I think there is still a long way for me in terms of stress management but smiling is a good start!

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