We’ve all heard the saying “confidence is key.”  If you can exude a feeling of confidence and charisma, then chances are you will have a greater self-esteem and be more successful in your life.

Too often, we see people trying to hide their smile because of self-esteem issues.  Maybe they are worried that their teeth are chipped or crooked or discolored.  Others just feel socially awkward and think that their smile looks weird or fake. But this can be a “self-fulfilling prophecy.”  If you lack confidence in your smile and don’t smile, then you will be less confident in your life in general, which will lead you to smile less. This is not a cycle you want to get caught in.

Smiling is more than a confidence booster–it can also lead to overall success in life. Here are some ways that flashing your pearly whites can positively impact your life.

  • You’ve heard that laughter is contagious. Well, so is smiling. If you walk around smiling, confidently looking people in the eye, they will often return the favor.
  • Smiling can release an element in your body called serotonin, a natural chemical that acts neurologically to fight depression. It also releases other endorphins that can help you feel happier and more confident.
  • If you look at the slate of online dating sites, you might notice that many people are smiling naturally and confidently in their profile photos. That’s because having a smile on your face makes you more attractive to other people.
  • Smiling can reduce your stress level. Too often, people spend their time worrying about the work they must do, which takes away from actually getting the work done.  A good smile can give you the productivity boost you need to get your work done.
  • A Penn State University study reports that people who smile appear more competent. A smile makes people feel more at ease about your capabilities, which can lead to more success.

Your confidence is the key to being successful. One of the easiest ways to gain that confidence is with your smile.

Here is an experiment for you. You can try it for a few days, a week, or a month–that part is up to you. Walk around and smile everywhere you go. Make a conscious effort to smile even when no one is looking. We are betting that it will make you feel better, make you more confident, and ultimately help you to be successful in your life and work.