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Joy

10 things that made us smile this week

Upworthy's weekly roundup of joy.

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Smiling is good for us all.

Did you know that one smile can stimulate your brain as much as 2,000 chocolate bars?

In a 2005 study, British researchers used an electromagnetic brain scan machine to measure mood boosts from various stimuli. Not only did seeing a child's smile provide the same stimulation as up to 2,000 chocolate bars, but it was also equivalent to receiving 16,000 British pounds (more than $25,000 in U.S. dollars at the time of the study).

Another study from Wayne State University, as reported by TIME, discovered that professional baseball players who were smiling widely in their photos lived an average of 79.9 years, while those who were not smiling only lived 72.9 years—a full seven-year difference.


In his 2011 TED Talk, "The Hidden Powers of Smiling," Ron Gutman shared what he'd gleaned from his review of research on smiling, including the above studies and more. He found that smiling is an incredibly powerful human behavior that can make a profound difference in our lives.

So these weekly smile-worthy roundups aren't just for fluff. Smiling is good for us, and if enough of us get enough of those feel-good endorphins, maybe—just maybe—we'll make a noticeable, positive mark on the world around us.

Enjoy, friends!

Michael Myers' dance moves turn Halloween horror into happiness and hilarity.

I'm not even a fan of horror flicks, but I couldn't love this more.

Pianist transforms standard iPhone alarm into a gorgeous piano ballad.

Musicians really deserve all the kudos. Imagine how sad and boring our world would be without them.

Roger Federer made a promise to a young fan in 2017 and just fulfilled it in the best way.

Zizou was only 6 years old when he asked Federer to keep playing long enough for him to compete with him. Now he's the top under-12 player in the U.S. and Federer gave him the surprise of a lifetime. So dang sweet. Read the full story here.

As a child, she gave her teacher one of her favorite toys. Three decades later, she got it back with the sweetest note.

For her twins! Absolutely amazing that she kept it for so long. We don't deserve teachers.

Woman surprised her husband with a custom love song and his reaction is everything.

Why did I not issue a tissue warning?!? Dang it. His face when he realizes it is so sweet, but his losing it when she sings about his kids and his mom? Oof. Just beautiful.

Dwarf mongoose plays dead when it encounters a hornbill and it's an incredible acting job.

I've watched this a dozen times and it only gets funnier each time.

Lebanese dance troupe wows yet again with stunning performance on 'America's Got Talent.'

Everything about this is mesmerizing. The costumes, the choreography, the coordination—all of it. Read more about this amazing dance troupe here.

Baby giggling over sweet potatoes and sounding like a kazoo is peak joy.

Fantastically fierce, furry feline fearlessly fights floating phantoms—and it's fabulously fun.

That is one adorably badass kitten.

Dance into the weekend with this surprisingly awesome Scottish-Indian musical mashup.

Whoever came up with putting these musical traditions together was a genius. Such a fun collaboration that works so well.

That's it for this week! Did you smile? Was it better than 2,000 chocolate bars? (I dunno, you guys. I love chocolate a whole lot. I don't think one smile is worth 2,000 chocolate bars. But maybe all the smiles from this list gets us pretty close.)

Be sure to come back next week for another roundup of joy, and subscribe to The Upworthiest newsletter to bring more smiles right to your inbox.

@drjasonisfresh/TikTok, Representative Image from Canva

Dr. Jason Singh explains the pro and cons of showering at night and in the morning.

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.

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Doctors have made it clear that kids don't need to bathe daily, with some going so far as to recommend against it when they are young to protect kids' delicate skin.

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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.”

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Ares and her mom, Melissa Fickle were driving with the windows down while they were on their way to the park. It was then that Fickle got into a car accident at an intersection causing Ares to bolt through the window and run off. The jolted woman thought the dog ran off into a neighborhood and worried she wouldn't see the sweet girl again, but Ares knew just where to go for help.

Instead of roaming the streets scared, the black pibble ran a full mile to get to the doggy daycare she visits often, demanding someone notice her.

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Odds are you’ve heard Wally de Backer, aka Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know.”

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The music video, in its poignant simplicity, is every bit as iconic.

Gotye stands naked facing the camera, as featured singer Kimbra faces him. As they sing, they are slowly “painted” into and out of the background of geometric shapes using stop motion animation. There’s a very Wes Anderson feel to it that adds so much to the story told in the song, making it all the more memorable.

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People reveal which paid memberships are 100 percent worth every penny

"Costco… For the chicken and food court alone it is worth it."

Photo (left) by Johannes Andersson on Unsplash Photo (right) by Ben Wicks on Unsplash

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With the basic cost of living stretching many folks financially, people are always on the lookout for ways to save money. But with long-term commitments and ever-increasing costs, people are also often wary of memberships or subscriptions that might save you money (or at least be worth what they cost), but also might not.

Thanks to a Reddit user who asked fellow Redditors, "What membership is 100% worth every penny you pay for it?" we've got a list of memberships that might actually be worth checking out.

The kinds of memberships people listed vary widely, from warehouse stores to learning programs to medical evacuation services, but everyone who shared made a strong case for why the cost of them are worth it.

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