Laughter is the best medicne!
This past month has felt heavy with the growing number of cases, ICU admissions, and the continued lockdowns. We are regularly learning about new ways to cope with the constant change and uncertainty in hopes that it will resonate with someone. They say laughter is the best medicine, so this week, we want to explore the restorative effects of laughing and how it is sometimes okay to find humour in difficult situations.
Did you know:
10-15 minutes of belly laughter can burn approximately 40 calories?
When we are stressed, our natural response is to fight, flight, or freeze. Once our body is engaged in such states, we are not able to heal. It is a protective reaction when we are faced with a threat, but when it is happening too often, it can distort cognitive functioning and create negative impacts on our mental health.
During a moment of stress, our breathing becomes shallow. This makes it challenging to think and come up with solutions. The brain needs 25% more oxygen than the rest of the body, which it does not receive if we are not properly breathing. Through laughing, we can regulate our breathing. How? Well, when we are laughing so hard, we need to gasp for air, and through that breath we get out of our heads. Meaning, we have come back to the present and are no longer consumed by what triggered our stress.
Did you know:
Our heart pumps the blood, but our body needs to circulate the lymph, which is done through breath and movement. Laughing moves our diaphragm, which aids in this lymph functioning.
Additional benefits of laughing:
- Enhances social connection
- Relaxes the body
- Prevents heart disease
- Helps diffuse conflict
- Increases resilience
- Boosts mood
- Reduces pain
- Strengthens immune system
- Releases tension
- Opens up creativity
how can we prime our laughter muscle?
Overhaul your social media
Ever heard of the law of attraction? Well, there are algorithms for that now! Monitor your daily diet of negativity by unfollowing accounts that trigger upsetting feelings and follow ones that make you feel inspired, grateful, motivated, and of course those that bring about a smile. Remember, what we put out there, we get back.
train your brain
fake it 'till you make it
sing and dance
watch funny videos
try laughter yoga
play with your children or pets
share the giggles
shift your perspective
For falling asleep:
With your eyes closed, trace a figure 8 around your eyes with your finger until you yawn.
Rub your hands together to create heat in your palms. Close your eyes and cup your palms over your eyes. Hold for 10 seconds and deeply breathe in and out for the duration.
For instant stress relief:
For balancing energy:
Use your fingers to lightly tap 5 times under your eyes, then move to the collarbone for 5 more taps, finishing with 5 taps under the ribs.
Have you had your daily dose of laughter?
Cathy Nesbitt from the Mental Health Online Symposium for Entrepreneurs Webinar Series hosted by The David Cohen Group
Image Source: https://www.azquotes.com/quote/616862
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