The term “resting bitch face” had its moment, which I laughed along with, but never REALLY understood because I have the opposite problem: Resting NICE face, which is the same as appearing approachable. Obvious downsides include creeps, not being taken seriously, and the assumption that you’re “interested.” Predictably, the best things are free stuff and animals also love you. Think Zooey Deschanel, Kimmy Schmidt, Belle from Beauty and the Beast. As a response to being dumped because “you’re like … so sweet”, I tried very hard to find “edge”. Despite efforts to arch my eyebrows and smile less, I am still just a nice person. It was only when I fully embraced this that I was able to see the more profound things that result from a perma -smile and, of course, self-acceptance.
1. You get really good at saying “no”
“No, I do not want to see Deadpool.” “No, I do not want to hang out.” “No, I am not able to commit at this time.” People assume that if you’re smiling, you’re up for anything, so expect to have your boundaries pushed further than most. As a result, also expect to get really good at making firm decisions. The combination of being a “yes” person with a nice face is a dangerous one. Learning to say “no” is an essential survival skill. The longer it takes you to figure this out, the more unacceptable behavior you’ll put up with and the more energy you’ll waste on people and things that do not serve you.
2. People get to know you better, faster
Saying “no” to one thing means saying “yes” to something else. Because you get asked to participate a lot, you have a chance every time to be clear on your preferences. After a few invitations, people figure out quickly what you like to do. If you’re doing it correctly, you’ll have to say “no” less and less because you’ll only be presented with interesting opportunities. If you had a resting BITCH face, you may not even get approached with an invite in the first place. So smile, be nice, and just say “No, I will never want to see the new Nicholas Sparks, but YES I would love to go bowling!”
3. Better conversations
Nice girls may finish last, but we’ve got all your secrets. People trust those who exude warmth. And trust is the ultimate social lubricant. People get into who they really are far quicker with you. You may not want to hear it, but you have to admit, it’s better than small talk.
4. You can get away with saying pretty much anything
I once got a raise for saying “fuck bitches get money” at a meeting. You’ve got a sweet face. Use it to say filthy things. Anyone who gets mad at you will feel like they are kicking a kitten. Once your verbal walls come down, you’ll also get really clever with words. Ever notice how the most unassuming often write or say the most outlandish, eloquent things?
5. Social situations are WAY more fun
All of the above combined make networking and otherwise uncomfortable social situations not just bearable, but actually fun for you and everyone else. It’s a mix of self-acceptance, being assertive, and not getting insulted when someone calls you “too nice” or “mousy.” Why be offended when you get to say “fuck off” to whomever you want, leaving your recipient surprised instead of wanting to kick your ass.