Thursday, October 4, 2012

Don't Worry, Be Happy: It's World Smile Day!

This Friday, 5 October 2012, we celebrate World Smile Day.
It was Hervey Ball, a commercial artist from Worcester, Massachussetts, who created the smiley face in 1963. He was hired by the State Mutual Life Assurance Company from his hometown to create a happy face to raise the morale of the its employees. He drew a face with a bright yellow background, dark oval eyes, full smile and creases at the sides of the mouth. The happy face was done in 10 minutes and Hervey Ball was paid $45 for the creation.
However, Hervey noticed that, through the years, the symbol he created beceme over-commercialized, and that its original meaning and intent got lost. Because of this concern, he conceived the idea of a "World Smile Day", so that at least one day each year everyone could devote it to smiles and kind acts throughout the world. He declared the first Friday in October each year as the "World Smile Day" which began in 1999.

Upon the death of Hervey in 2001, the Hervey Ball World Small Foundation was founded to honor his name and memory. It continues as the official sponsor of the "World Smile Day" each year.

King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck (edit).jpg
Bhutan measures its socioeconomic development through the gross national happiness (GNH), which is quite different from what other countries used, the gross national product (GNP) or the gross domestic product (GDP)..GNH was coined in 1972 by its Bhutan's king, Jigme Singye Wangchuck. He used the phrase to show his commitment to build an economy that would reflect his country's unique culture, which is based on Bhuddist spiritual values.

So, why should we smile and be happy? Gail Brenner enumerated 10 life changing facts about happiness:
  1. Enduring happiness is possible.
  2. You need to get serious about happiness.
  3. If you rely on unreliable objects for your happiness, you will not end up happy.
  4. If you want to be happy, look at how you make yourself unhappy.
  5. Happiness breeds more happiness.
  6. Happiness is always present and available.
  7. Happiness is a word that refers to a state that can't be defined in words.
  8. A wandering mind is an unhappy mind.
  9. Thoughts undermine your happiness.
  10. Happiness is a choice.
To read her complete article, click here.

That happiness is a choice, had  been echoed by the President and CEO of PJ Lhuilier Group of Companies, Jean Henn Lhuilier, as the Happiest Pinoy for 2012 was honored on 18 September 2012 at the Rizal Ballroom of the Makati Shangrila. This only shows the Filipinos, despite trials, obstacles or hardships remain optimistic and can still keep happy even during tough times.

As for me? I also choose to be happy because its fun and free. Happy World Smile Day! :)


Tin | The Average Jane said...

Very interesting. I just thought the Happy Smile was invented as the mascot of the 70s hippies. =)

T said...

Didn't the Philippines once rank high in the list of happiest countries? Anyway, happy World Smile Day to you!

Batangala said...

If it was, maybe we weren't born yet, ha ha ha. Kidding aside, i think the feeling of happiness is subjective. it's a state of mind. and it's humor that keeps filipinos sane even through the hardest of
times :)

Batangala said...

i think there were other variations prior to the smiley of Hervey but I believe it was his drawing which caught on and yup became an icon for the flower power people of the 70s