Laughter really can be the best form of life medicine
One of the best feelings in the world is a good, authentic laugh. It can bring people together and establish amazing connections. Everything from a little giggle to a side-splitting cackle can change the mood of a room.
There is so much to love about laughter that it seems greedy to look for more, but there are an abundance of benefits from laughing.
Laughter and Health
Laughter can lead to a longer life as a result of:
- – enhanced moods
- – decreases in blood pressure
- – decreases in stress-related hormones
- – reduced levels of anxiety and depression
- – decreased hunger hormones
- – lower good cholesterol and higher good cholesterol levels
- – overall increased immunity
In addition, laughing can tone your abs, give you a low impact cardio workout and can help ease physical pain!
Laughter and Learning
As toddlers, we learn new tasks more easily when we are happy and laughing. This is because laughter has the same effect on the brain as meditation, providing clarity and focus.
This translates into later-life learning also, where studies have shown that learning ability and memory recall was better in older adults when humour was involved.
Moreover, when teachers include humour in their teaching styles (whether in the classroom or virtually), they are better able to engage with their students, which results in better learning outcomes.
Laughter and Relationships
We are 30 times more likely to laugh at something when we are with other people than when we are alone.
When we share a laugh with someone, it brings them closer together, even if you were previously strangers. In addition, strangers are more like to open up if they are made to laugh first.
Sharing a laugh with someone you are already close to can:
- – encourage attraction
- – strengthen the relationship
- – create memories that improve relationship satisfaction when remembered
At work, leaders that show a sense of humour inspire innovation amongst their colleagues. Sharing a laugh also assists the group dynamics within a team.
How can I get my giggle on more?
- 1. Laughter is contagious, so spend time with people who laugh and smile more
- 2. Even anticipating a laugh can provide some of the above benefits, so plan some funny
- 3. Watch your favourite stand-up comedian on YouTube
- 4. Listen to a funny podcast on your way to or from work
- 5. Go out with friends for a karaoke night
- 6. Rewatch a comedy sitcom or movie that always cracks you up
- 7. Play with a dog (even if you have to borrow one from a friend)
- 8. Look through old photos
- 9. Find humour in your most embarrassing moments and share the story with a close friend
- 10. Read through the humour cards in a gift shop