Research shows that children smile about 400 times a day and adults smile anywhere from 20-50 times a day depending on their overall levels of happiness.
How many times you smile might fall somewhere in between, but what matters more than how often you smile is where you do it. In America, a smiling face is viewed as a welcome sight. It's often considered a polite greeting, or at least a symbol of happiness. In fact, some research shows that smiling makes you more dateable.
One psychology lecturer said "a smile is the best accessory" and believes it makes more of a difference than using products like anti-aging creams or botox.
But that's not the case everywhere. Depending on the culture, smiling can show a lack of intelligence or honesty. In Russia, in particular, smiling portrays a sense of sneakiness or an intent to manipulate. In Japan, the way that you smile can change the meaning because the focus is more on the eyes than the rest of the face.
In general, Americans smile more than people in many other countries. Countries like Switzerland, Norway, and Sweden have higher levels of happiness when surveyed than people living in America, yet they smile significantly less. So, a lack of a smile might not always convey unhappiness.
Whether you're traveling to another country for personal reasons or business, it might be a good idea to do some research ahead of time and see what customs are normal in the area. Knowing when to smile can make all the difference.
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