+
upworthy
Joy

10 things that made us smile this week

Upworthy's weekly roundup of joy.

smile happy joy uplifting

10 reasons to smile.

Since we're entering cold and flu season while also (still) trying to fend off COVID-19, we could all use some tips for boosting our immune system. We probably all know the standards—eating well, getting enough sleep, exercising—but did you know that joy can also give your immune system a kick?

According to the Mayo Clinic, laughter can release neuropeptides that can help prevent illness from becoming more serious and help fight stress that can weaken your immune system. A 2003 study found that people with more positive emotional states were less likely to develop a common cold, a 2015 study found that laugh therapy helped boost the immune response in women who had just given birth and multiple other studies have come to similar conclusions.


According to ENT-otolaryngologist Dr. Murray Grossan, even a simple smile can offer immunity benefits. “What’s crazy is that just the physical act of smiling can make a difference in building your immunity,” Dr. Grossan told NBC News. “When you smile, the brain sees the muscle [activity] and assumes that humor is happening.”

So consider this list a weekly dose of emotional inoculation. Can't guarantee it'll keep you from catching anything, but it certainly isn't gonna hurt ya!

Enjoy!

Swan couple engaging in a graceful courtship dance is just mesmerizing.

So beautiful. Mute swans are one of the few bird species that mate for life. (And whoever played the "Swan Lake" theme over this was brilliant.)

Kiddo getting woken by a new puppy surprise is the stuff core memories are made of.

Love how it took him a few seconds to enter his body and see what was happening. Then a hug before anything else. So sweet.

Cuddly cat appears to comfort human who is crying.

"Hey, hooman. You okay? Let me smoosh my face on you to make you feel better."

Dad sings Persian song for baby who blissfully rests on his guitar.

Gracious. What a lovely voice, beautiful song and adorable baby.

Doggo greets his bestest boy with the bestest hug.

I'd like to put in a request for this kind of greeting every time I come home, please.

Kid meets his baby brother for the first time and makes everyone's eyes all sweaty.

@brianaarielle89

#fyp #viral #heartwarming #siblings #brothers #babiesoftiktok

Good tears, but phew! I was not ready. Read the full story and see the Part Two video here.

This baby girl's "Hi, baby girrrl" is almost too much cuteness to handle.

@aliannaandfam

Hi mommy! 👋🏽😁 #babygirl #babyfever #babiesoftiktok #beautifulpeople #love #god

She's so darn proud of herself. As she should be.

Selma Blair, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis four years ago, lit up "Dancing With the Stars."

It hasn't been an easy road for Blair, and she was afraid she would lose her balance during the performance, but she wanted to show that people with disabilities can find joy in unexpected ways. Mission accomplished. Read the full story here.

Wee one takes his first steps and decides dancing is more important.

That shoulder shrug, though. May we all walk through life with such sweetness and swagger!

Finally, a little Paul Rudd "September" dance montage to carry you through the weekend.

If Paul Rudd being Paul Rudd doesn't make you smile, I'm not sure I can help you.

Hope that made your week a whole lot brighter! If you enjoy these posts and want to have them delivered straight to you each week, subscribe to our free newsletter, The Upworthiest, here.

Pop Culture

Two brothers Irish stepdancing to Beyoncé's country hit 'Texas Hold 'Em' is pure delight

The Gardiner Brothers and Queen Bey proving that music can unite us all.

Gardiner Brothers/TikTok (with permission)

The Gardiner Brothers stepping in time to Beyoncé's "Texas Hold 'Em."

In early February 2024, Beyoncé rocked the music world by releasing a surprise new album of country tunes. The album, Renaissance: Act II, includes a song called "Texas Hold 'Em," which shot up the country charts—with a few bumps along the way—and landed Queen Bey at the No.1 spot.

As the first Black female artist to have a song hit No. 1 on Billboard's country music charts, Beyoncé once again proved her popularity, versatility and ability to break barriers without missing a beat. In one fell swoop, she got people who had zero interest in country music to give it a second look, forced country music fans to broaden their own ideas about what country music looks like and prompted conversations about bending and blending musical genres and styles.

And she inspired the Gardiner Brothers to add yet another element to the mix—Irish stepdance.

Keep ReadingShow less
Representative Image from Canva

There's probably no wrong time to shower, as long as you're doing it consistently.

Dr. Jason Singh, who has all kinds of medical insights on TikTok, recently weighed in on the topic he joked was “more debatable than pineapple on pizza.

That debate would be whether it’s better to shower in the morning, or at night.

You would think the “right answer” would be largely up to personal preference, much like which way to face while showering and whether or not to snack in the shower…two previous hot button issues online.

But according to Singh, there are definitive pros and cons to each option, which could settle the debate once and for all.

Keep ReadingShow less
Health

Motivation expert explains how two simple words can free you from taking things personally

You don't need to take responsibility for everything and everyone.

Mel Robinson making a TED Talk.

Towards the end of The Beatles’ illustrious but brief career, Paul McCartney wrote “Let it Be,” a song about finding peace by letting events take their natural course. It was a sentiment that seemed to mirror the feeling of resignation the band had with its imminent demise.

The bittersweet song has had an appeal that has lasted generations and that may be because it reflects an essential psychological concept: the locus of control.

“It’s about understanding where our influence ends and accepting that some things are beyond our control,” Jennifer Chappell Marsh, a marriage and family therapist, told The Huffington Post. “We can’t control others, so instead, we should focus on our own actions and responses.”

Keep ReadingShow less

Woman tells God to make her a tree in next life, moms agree

There are a lot of things that come with parenting that may be unexpected or may be a little different once you settle into the role. And while things are changing, it seems moms are still carrying the brunt of the mental load. Sometimes the mental and physical load of motherhood make you want to do something drastic like turn into something other than a human.

Brianna Frye has had enough of what it takes to be a woman in today's society and the comedian, who is also a working mom, took to Instagram to ask for a do over in her next life. The exasperated mom has some suggestions for the big guy upstairs that seem quite reasonable as she pleads her case.

"When I tell you I am so freaking tired of being the woman, I really just feel like God could've made me a dinosaur or a frog or even a tree at this point. I'm fine with being a tree," Frye says.

Keep ReadingShow less
Parenting

People share nine seemingly 'overrated' baby items that new parents should absolutely get

No, you don't need the most expensive stuff but parents are swearing by things on this list.

Amazon

People share nine seemingly 'overrated' baby items you need

As a participant in the Amazon Associates affiliate program, Upworthy may earn proceeds from items purchased that are linked to this article, at no additional cost to you.


From the moment you find out you're expecting a baby it seems like every store you've ever shopped at also received the positive pregnancy results. Suddenly you're getting emails and ads for every baby item imaginable. Your head is spinning with choices and no real idea on what you actually need, especially if this is your first baby.

It doesn't take long to figure out that baby items are expensive and there are a lot of them, but which items can be left on the shelf and which ones should make its way to the registry? A group of parents answered the question, which overrated baby item they'd absolutely recommend spending the money on and some things may be a surprise.

Keep ReadingShow less
Focus Features/Youtube, Representative Image from Canva

A still from Focus Features' "Won't you Be My Neighbor?" documentary trailer (Left). Dad smiling and holding child (right)

Dad and parenting educator Jon Fogel, who goes by @wholeparent on social media, thinks he’s stumbled onto “one of the greatest parenting hack ever,” thanks to Mister Rogers.

In a clip posted to TikTok, Fogel explained how he had recently stumbled upon a study about the effect that “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” had on kids.”

“Kids who watched [the show] for whatever reason, seemed to be more patient, more calm, just more, like, emotionally attuned,” he said.

Keep ReadingShow less