Is Laughter the Best Medicine?

By Valerie Sheppard

Today I enjoyed a wonderful You-Tube video with a group of people staging a ‘laugh-in’ on the subway. It is a wonderful illustration of how laughter is contagious!  To watch it, click HERE.

One of the joys of participating in and teaching Laughter Yoga is that I’ve experienced first hand that laughter, whether purposefully generated or in response to something we see or experience that’s funny, has the same wonderful and generative benefits:  we relax, endorphins go racing through the body, and we receive a big injection of HAPPINESS!  Whoever first coined the adage that laughter is the best medicine was right!

The Benefits of Laughter
Physical Health Benefits:

  • Boosts immunity
  • Lowers stress hormones
  • Decreases pain
  • Relaxes your muscles
  • Prevents heart disease
Mental Health Benefits:

  • Adds joy and zest to life
  • Eases anxiety and fear
  • Relieves stress
  • Improves mood
  • Enhances resilience
Social Benefits:

  • Strengthens relationships
  • Attracts others to us
  • Enhances teamwork
  • Helps diffuse conflict
  • Promotes group bonding

You’ve probably already heard me say that happiness leads to success and not the other way around.  It stands to reason then that if laughter gives you happy moments, it can contribute to your success.

Whatever else you do in any given day, take a few minutes to spend some time in laughter.  You can visit my laughter page where you’ll find funny videos, jokes and images, find a laughter club near you (if you’re in Orange County, come join me at the Laguna Beach Laughter Club), check out some improv comedy live performances or videos, or start giggling for absolutely no reason at all!  When you keep it going for more than 20 minutes, the laughter itself is therapeutic and will energize and inspire your day.  If you’d like to bring more laughter into your workplace, invite LaughFit to create a program there.

Wishing you a laughter-filled day, a life overflowing with happiness, and much success in all things.

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