CREATING A SMILE CHAIN AROUND THE WORLD
A fun and easy act of kindness we can ALL do to bring up many benefits. Everyone understands a smile.
About this project
"Nerea recently gave me a card which says 'smile and pass it on' and so I used it when I was on the train the other day - sad to think how scared I was doing such a small act but, oh, the feeling once I did it! It was so much fun! It's so easy to lose touch with humanity, particularly when we live in London." Arabella Smirnova
We want to make the world a happier, brighter place starting from London! Smiling more often and encouraging everyone to do so will create a smile chain around the world. We believe great things -big or small- can happen with just a simple smile: from a greater sense of well-being, to friendlier communities and increased opportunities. Everyone understands a smile. You get out of your comfort zone! You change your frame of mind and emotion! You connect with people!
Smiling to a stranger can be a challenge for some people; so, first of all you, the act urges you to get out of your comfort zone and helps you grow and change your state into a more energetic one! You connect with people through a very simple action which can potentially lead to creating a new friend, a new date, a business contact or even a new job!
We dream of creating new connections in London and we are determined to turn that dream into reality through a "Just Smile London" Day on the 30th August 2015 which will be only the starting point! We plan on facilitating monthly activities that will get people to connect and talk about the benefits of smiling as well as experimenting with it. The events will include: Giving out thousands of smiles as well as Just Smile cards, talks by experts on well-being, community cohesion, support, etc. to help us think about the massive impact of the simple act of smiling. Our stretch targets will help us do even more in the future: £12,000 will enable us to make ‘Just Smile Day’ bigger and bolder.
We are giving out 20,000 Smile Cards and we are organizing FREE events in North, East, South, West as well as in Central London, to ensure that the Just Smile message reaches all corners of this awesome city and the whole world!
Watch in 44 seconds in English!
Initiatives in Central London include:
Just Smile TUBE Walk – We are hosting a great crowd to walk all over London Underground, smiling to people and giving out cards, in an attempt to push ourselves further away from our comfort zone. We will continue on other public transport and streets and end up in Hyde Park to have an amazing picnic organized by our volunteers! We will embark on a plan to connect in a deeper sense with each other and boost our confidence! Produce a Just Smile Toolkit: We will work with communication experts to create and publicize a toolkit to provide guidance to anyone who wants to organize their own Just Smile event in their own neighbourhood! In turn, we will promote these events through our own channels to make these initiatives available in every area!
Watch one of our days in London below:
Have you ever felt the need to smile to someone who has caught your attention or has given you a friendly impression but you never did? Or, perhaps, have you ever wondered if you could help someone who looked particularly sad? Have you ever been so happy that you wanted to share your happiness with someone but you never did because is not socially accepted? In London, we walk far away from the crowd to avoid eye contact in the tube and those who do talk are seen as the odd exception. To us, this seems like a shame for several reasons:
We live in one of the most diverse cities in the world, with people from countless different backgrounds, yet we only share little of it. To many, London can be an unfriendly or independent place; it is consistently designated as the loneliest city in the UK, with more than a quarter of all Londoners admitting their loneliness at most times. A recent survey by TripAdvisor rated London as the second most unfriendly city in the world. No wonder it’s hard to make friends or meet people. But when you simply look at people’s eyes and, instead of avoiding their look, you smile and they smile back, something magical emerges in the air that you can’t quite put into words. Something that reminds us that we trust each other, we look out for each other, we are connected and because of these, we are happier as a result. It is indeed undeniable that London could only benefit from this shared sense of community.
"It is amazing what you do, and the whole movement of SMILE still fascinates me! Keep on going and I do walk and smile on the street here back home where in a week I saw one person smiling and walking (and I made it a task to look at as many people as I can and smile to here). We need to make a smile epidemic here." Milos Zikic
We are proud to be featured on different magazines and online blogs such as - Migrant Woman by Mirela Sula (http://www.migrantwoman.com/) - Screw the System by Joe Barnes (http://www.screwthesystemnow.com/) To see full articles please go to our site, www.smilesfortheworld.com. We have already sent more than 1500 cards to the UK, France, Spain, Mexico, NY and India. To see pictures and videos please click below.
THE REWARDS The cards! The Initiative! Personalized cards. T-shirts. Just Smile bags. Workshops to become a great leader and awesome free events! The sense of community and, of course, the connections created.
AFTER THE DAY
We aspire to establish this day and we are positive that its impact on our sense of a shared community and our well-being will be so tremendous that it will be travelling all over the world after the big event of the 30th of August. We want the day to have a lasting effect by raising awareness on the importance of connecting with others and expressing ourselves freely in any situation. ‘Just Smile Day’ has the full potential to become an annual event that will grow in size and impact every year. The Just Smile Initiative is our resort to the mass feeling of loneliness in the hectic capital. It specifically aims at improving community connectedness and well-being in London and in the world. Its long-term goals include becoming able to reach audiences that cannot afford the training and events we will be delivering. Human intuition has the power to acknowledge that smiling the miraculous abilities of smiling. Here are some of them:
1. Smiling is Contagious
Because of the complex brain activity that is involved in smiling, smiles are contagious. Studies report that the mere act of seeing someone smiling activates the area of your brain that controls your facial movement, leading to a grin. Even in bad situations, if you smile, those around you are likely to mimic the expression.
2. You will Decrease Stress and Anxiety
It is not easy to keep smiling in stressful situations, but studies report that doing exactly that benefits our health. When recovering from a stressful situation, study participants who were smiling had lower heart rates than those with a neutral facial expression. So, the next time you’re feeling stressed, try and smile to calm yourself down.
3. Smiling Releases Endorphins
Smiling can help you manage stress and anxiety by releasing endorphins, chemicals that make you happier. Endorphins are the same chemicals you get from working out or running, resulting in what is known as a ‘runner’s high’.
4. You Will Be More Attractive
A smile suggests that you’re personable, easy going, and empathetic. In fact, a study in the European Journal of Social Psychology asserted that smiling actually makes you more attractive to those you smile at.
5. Smiling Strengthens Your Immune System
Smiling even has the ability to strengthen your immune system by making your body produce white blood cells to help fight illnesses. One study found that hospitalized children who were visited by story-tellers and puppeteers who made them smile and laugh had higher white blood cell numbers than children who were not visited.
6. You Will Be Friendlier
Studies have found that people are more willing to engage socially with people who are seen smiling. A smile is an inviting facial expression that tells people you are willing to talk and interact with them. So, turn that frown upside-down if you want to meet new people!
7. Smiling Will Make You More Comfortable
It is our natural tendency to stick to things we are familiar with, but smiling decreases this need. Studies support that smiling can make you more comfortable in situations you would otherwise feel awkward in.
8. You Will Be More Trustworthy
Trusting doesn’t come easily to many, but smiling at someone may help. Participants in a University of Pittsburgh study rated people who smiled as more trustworthy than people with non-smiling facial expressions. So, if you want to improve your credibility, simply smile more. What could be easier than that?
9. You Will Be a Better Leader
If you’re in a position of power, or want to be, smiling may be the key to your success. A group of researchers from The University of Montpellier discovered that smiling is a more effective leadership technique than having great management responsibilities. So, the next time you really want to show off those leadership skills, just smile!
10. You will overcome a possible FEAR
If smiling in every situation means getting out of your comfort zone, the act itself will help you overcome your fear of judgment! It will help you grow innately and feel how rejuvenating it can be. On top of this, you will begin to connect with people deeply.
WHO HAS BACKED US SO FAR
We have a few donators and collaborators. For example, the printer company that is responsible for the banners and cards voluntarily reduces our expenses by charging us only half of the price. The Happy World Company happily sponsors this event by providing events management and professionals to run the events.
GET (and remain) IN TOUCH
If you are interested in learning more or getting involved in the organization of this day, please visit our website, www.smilesfortheworld.com. Do not forget to sign up for our newsletter! Alternatively if you have any questions or just want to get in touch then drop us a line at email@example.com - we'd love to talk to you! We have been featured on a number of magazines and online blogs such as: - Migrant Woman by Mirela Sula (http://www.migrantwoman.com/) - Screw the System by Joe Barnes (http://www.screwthesystemnow.com/)
Risks and Challenges
People will possibly not smile back at you and they could make you feel rejected but, as you will recognize through this experience, not everyone is in the same wavelength. Do not feel bad about it and, if this is the case please let us know. We recommend starting with people who look more open and friendly but you can always look for the challenging ones to build your own confidence.
You don't need to smile to people constantly unless you feel like doing so. It is a great challenge if you have never tried it and it can feel a bit enforced at the start but once you have done it several times you will feel comfortable doing it whenever you feel like it! Watch it become a life-changing habit! We will send you some tips once we have sent you the cards, so you have nothing to worry about!
Learn about accountability on Kickstarter FAQ Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
Risks and challenges
In terms of having all the cards, bags, T-shirts ready will will give ourselves a month and a half to order them as well as to have all the informations ready for sending them.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (50 days)