Your eyes widen and you feel your entire body tense. Your heart stops in your chest and you stop dead in your tracks. The old acquaintance you really cannot stand has spotted you in the grocery store; and she has called your name with such enthusiasm in her voice you know she’s going to want to chat for hours. You take a deep breath; plaster a huge (fake) smile on your face and turn around to face the dragons. We all do it. We all fake a smile from time to time. Is it always nice and honest of us? Not really. However, we all do it, and here are a few occasions when faking your happiness it totally all right.
During Stressful Moments
Medical research states that even when you don’t mean it, a smile during stressful situations mitigates stress and lowers your heart rate. Even when life seems to be handing you nothing but lemons (and you cannot find a bottle of vodka anywhere) you can go ahead and smile. Trust me; it will make you feel much better.
When You Are in Trouble
Okay, so last week you went to Saks and bought a gorgeous new pair of Christian Louboutin’s for full price. When your husband asked why Saks was charging your bank account the equivalent of your mortgage, you fibbed slightly and told him you purchased a new wardrobe for work. All is well; until you forget to toss the receipt in the trash and he realizes that those gorgeous black Louboutin’s he was suspicious over at dinner last night aren’t a pair you’ve “had for ages” but the only item you purchased at Saks last week. Go ahead and smile. Studies show that when you’re in trouble for something, the person mad at you is less likely to stay mad if you smile (and if that doesn’t work, wear the shoes – and nothing else – to bed. He’ll see they were worth the price.)
When You Run Into Someone You Don’t Like
Being rude to someone you don’t like (why they want to speak to you when you’ve made it abundantly clear you don’t like them never ceases to confuse me to no end) isn’t going to do anyone any favors. So the next time that obnoxious girl from high school corners you, fake a smile, and a deadline, and make your exit.