Few weeks ago I was having a conversation with a dear friend of mine. It was a kind of catch up, since he lives in Italy and I live in England and it was quite a few years that, for many reasons, we didn’t have the opportunity to spend some time together. To my surprise he wasn’t the happy person that he used to be. He was telling me that he was going through a bad period, he was listing to me all the things that were wrong etc and I was quite surprised to see him in that state.
So I asked him, what happened to your “loud laugh”? I remember he had a really contagious loud laugh, if you were in his presence it was very difficult not to start laughing as well or at least having a big smile.
He replied saying, you know mate, I don’t really have anything to laugh about, I have lost the spark, I am down in the dumb, sometimes I feel even depressed, my life is a kind of a mess and I don’t feel like laughing anymore at the moment, I don’t have any reasons at all to be happy and even less for laughing.
I don’t hide that I felt bad for him, in front of me I had a different person, the guy that used to make me laugh all the time when we were kids, wasn’t there anymore.
Obviously I did my best to “inject” some positive and happy vibes in his life and here I am to write a post about laughter with the hope that can inspire and help someone to start laughing again or start enjoying laughing.
We don’t need any particular reasons for laughing, some times we only need to stimulate our laugh and believe me, it works, it makes you feel better, try to believe it.
Life is very easy, but we tend to complicate it and on top of that we tend not to give the right importance to “small and simple” things that instead can make a big difference in our life.
One of these things is laughter.
(What are the others? The importance of Breathing – The importance of Meditation – Attitude, another small thing that can make a big difference in our life.)
So, how much importance do we give to laughter? How often do we laugh? Is laughter part of our daily life?
Laughter has been considered one of the Best Medicines, it’s free and is one of the best emotional and physical therapies for anyone under stress.
Now let’s try to understand first why laughing can be beneficial to our life and then we will see what we can do to laugh more.
Laughing releases endorphins into the brain. Endorphins are like the nerve-numbing drug morphine and serve to reduce harmful chemicals in the body that are released by stress.
Releasing stress also immediately puts you in a better mood and improves your attitude so you can feel ready to tackle tough situations.
Laughing puts you in a more positive frame of mind, which will then allow you to see the good in everything.
Laughter is good also for our Physical Health, in fact the act of laughing can cause beneficial physical changes to your body. In addition to relieving stress, laughter gives you a renewed boost of energy and relieves minor pains.
Health Benefits of Laughter
# Laughter relaxes the whole body.
You can relieve stress and relax your body and muscles for up to an hour.
# Laughter boosts the immune system.
Believe it or not, laughter can increase your immunity which helps you fight off disease.
# Laughter signals the release of endorphins,
the natural chemical that helps us feel good. Endorphins can also relieve minor pain temporarily.
# Laughter improves blood circulation.
Good hearty laughs on a regular basis help improve the blood flow through your body and strengthen your heart function.
Laughter improves Your Mental Health
#Laughter relieves sad or distressing emotions.
It moves your focus and attention from negative thoughts and emotions. You can’t feel anxious, angry, or sad when you’re in the midst of a deep belly laugh. It also helps replacing negative thoughts.
# Laughter relaxes your mind and recharges your energy.
A good laugh can reduce your stress, increase your energy, and help you stay focused.
# Laughter improves your problem solving skills.
It can help you see another perspective of an issue, thus allowing you to strategize different ways to solve the problem.
So now how can we laugh more?
It’s very easy, we can look specifically for something that make us laugh. As I mentioned before we need to stimulate our laughter.
We can dedicate around 10 – 15 minutes every day for that. As I keep saying all the time, it’s about creatating a new habit.
What about a 30 day challenge, where you have to laugh for a few minutes every day for 30 days?
Here are some Suggestions to stimulate a belly laugh.
# We should choose carefully what to watch on TV.
I suggest to regularly watch funny movies and funny TV programs. When driving we can also listen to some funny comedy radio.
# We can go on youtube and type “funny videos”.
The first video might not make us laugh straight away but if we don’t give up, and we watch another one, I am sure we will end up certainly with a big smile on our face if not with a big healthy laugh. Just try, you have nothing to lose.
# Watch Someone Else Laughing.
Laughing is contagious and watching someone laughing can help us laugh too. Here is a short Video, enjoy it and let’s see if you can resist not laughing.
# Start laughing at yourself.
Learning to laugh at ourselves is one of the biggest differences between happy people and depressed people. If we can turn awkward moments, mistakes and shortcomings as opportunities for a good laugh at our own expense, those things will lose their power on us.
# Force Yourself to a Laugh.
Often, our body needs a kind of jump start to get in the mood for laughter. Even if you don’t find something particularly funny to laugh at, just making yourself laugh can get you started on a healthy giggling fit. When you’re alone try laughing a few times as realistically as you can.
- Start with three short “ha” sounds and do several sets of forced laughs to get started with. You’ll be surprised at how quickly forced laughs can turn into legitimate ones.
- Think of something you found funny in the past and laughed at. Recall it during your laugh session to help stimulate the laughs.
# Laughter Yoga.
Are you serious in laughing more, why don’t you try laughter yoga? I haven’t personally tried Laughter yoga, I have only watched a documentarie on TV about it, I also did some researches on the internet and it seems quite good.
# Choose wisely the people around you.
Surround yourself with people who make you laugh and avoid people that love complaining if you are not strong enough they can bring you down and drain your energy.
Here we are at the end of this post, now if you think you need more laughter in our life, you need to take ACTION!
Commit yourself that you are going to laugh more, decide what to do and Get in the habit of laughing more often!
Do you laugh often? What makes you laugh?
Some famous Laughter Quotes
“A day without laughter is a day wasted.” Charlie Chaplin
“Laughter heals all wounds, and that’s one thing that everybody shares. No matter what you’re going through, it makes you forget about your problems. I think the world should keep laughing.” Kevin Hart
“Laughter is an instant vacation.” Milton Berle
“Laughter is the tonic, the relief, the surcease for pain.” Charlie Chaplin
“Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face.” Victor Hugo
“The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.” Mark Twain