Thursday, June 23, 2022

The Pen Experiment and Happiness

 One of the research experiments that I found really interesting was the experiment about smiling and how it can boost your emotional state. This experiment required the participant to put a pen in between their teeth, and follow a couple of tasks. One of the tasks regarded rating the amusement of a cartoon that they were showed. They then had to complete the same tasks while putting the pen between their lips; similar to how someone would hold a cigarette to their mouth. 

The results concluded that participants rated the cartoons with higher levels of amusement when the pen was between their teeth, and not touching their lips. Since their facial muscles were already in the form that is similar to that of a smile, their brains registered their face as smiling, and their endorphins and serotonin levels were more likely to rise. 

CNBC wrote an article that I found extremely helpful and even more interesting after I read this section of the book. The muscle movements needed to create a smile send signals to the amygdala. The amygdala is the part of the brain that makes you feel emotions. 

I found this interesting because it suggested that something as simple as smiling can increase your happiness levels, which is something that I think a lot of the world could benefit from!

Link to the CNBC article:

1 comment:

  1. I thought it was interesting that forcing someone to smile unconsciously made them rate the cartoons as more amusing. I wonder if there would be a way to implement this tactic to cure depression.