The Most Amazing Thing
You Can Do with a SMILE
“A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.” - Phyllis Diller
In sailing, it is important to “Hit the Deck Running.” In speaking, it is important to “Take the Stage Shining!” This means that from the moment you are introduced you must channel away all distractions and concentrate your total focus on your message, its delivery and your audience.
The first task you have as a speaker is making your audience feel welcome. Make them feel you are happy to be there. You can achieve this by sharing your S.M.I..L.E.
A smile is the most powerful tool you have as a speaker. It is your indication to the audience that what you will share with them will make a difference. It shows that you will willingly give them a slice of you.
What is in a S.M.I.L.E.?
As a speaker, I love mnemonics.
A mnemonic is an easy way to help people remember something by connecting it to an easily remembered word or saying. As a child, you may have used the word “HOMES” to remember the names of the great lakes (HOMES = Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie and Superior). Or this saying, “Super Man Helps Every One” to remember the great lakes according to size.
Here’s a mnemonic to help you remember the power of your smile.
Your S.M.I.L.E. is a… Spectacular Mental Image Loaded with Energy.
A Smile Costs You Nothing and Buys You Everything
Imagine you have a renewable energy source. No matter how much of it you use, your reserve will never run dry. That would be awesome if it could power a car or light you home.
Well, guess what? You do! And, you can use this energy source to power your next speech or presentation.
I call this unlimited energy source… smile power.
Buy the good graces of nature, we are all equipped with an inexhaustible supply of smiles. When you give one away, you very often get one back. Your smile power multiplies and increases the energy of every recipient. That includes every person in your audience too.
You don’t have to be giddy doing it. I said SMILE not laugh.
I once heard a speaker talk about her son who she had lost to a disease. She spoke about how she and her husband were so inspired by his life, they created playgrounds for kids with special medical needs. While she was speaking, there was not a dry eye on the house. But she had a smile on her face. A smile of grace, knowing that she was touching the lives of so many people on behalf of her son.
Practice Makes Connection
A smile should come naturally. But I have had clients tell me, “I don’t like my smile” or “Smiling makes me uncomfortable.” Like any skill we do with purpose, a smile needs to be practiced.
So where do you begin?
At home. In the mirror.
Here’s a smiling exercise I share with my clients.
- When you wake up in the morning and stumble into the bathroom, take a moment to stare into your eyes, make contact and hold it until you begin to smile at yourself.
- When you get home from work, head straight to the nearest mirror and take the 2 -3 minutes to repeat your morning exercise.
- The last thing you do before you go to bed, take a moment to once again stare into your eyes, make contact and hold it until you begin to smile at yourself.
Giving yourself the gift of your own smile is better than a mint on your pillow. It is also a powerful way to program your brain for a positive, relaxing sleep.
Try it. A smile costs you nothing…and will return giant dividends for the energy you invest.
Whether this post brings a smile to your face or not, please comment below. I’m here to serve you, my reader, and your input is most appreciated.