Vivian Graham, Physician Assistant
Feeling rundown? Try laughing more. Some researchers think laughter just might be the best medicine, helping you feel better and putting that spring back in your step. Humor is almost always present in most life situations but at times over shadowed by the moment.
Humor, however, is infectious. The sound of roaring laughter is far more contagious than any cough, sniffle, or sneeze. When laughter is shared, it binds people together and increases happiness and intimacy. Laughter also triggers healthy physical changes in the body. Humor and laughter strengthen your immune system, boost your energy, diminish pain, and protect you from the damaging effects of stress. Best of all, this priceless medicine is fun, free, and easy to use
Life brings challenges that can either get the best of you or become playthings for your imagination. When you “become the problem” and take yourself too seriously, it can be hard to think outside the box and find new solutions. But when you play with the problem, you can often transform it into an opportunity for creative learning.
Laughter is your birthright, a natural part of life that is innate and inborn. Even if you did not grow up in a household where laughter was a common sound, you can learn to laugh at any stage of life.
Here are some ways to start:
Smile. Smiling is the beginning of laughter. Like laughter, it’s contagious.
Count your blessings. Literally make a list. The simple act of considering the good things in your life will distance you from negative thoughts that are a barrier to humor and laughter.
When you hear laughter, move toward it. Sometimes humor and laughter are private, a shared joke among a small group, but usually not. More often, people are very happy to share something funny because it gives them an opportunity to laugh again and feed off the humor you find in it. When you hear laughter, seek it out and ask, “What’s funny?”
Spend time with fun, playful people. These are people who laugh easily–both at themselves and at life’s absurdities–and who routinely find the humor in everyday events. This one is my favorite!
Bring humor into conversations. Ask people, “What’s the funniest thing that happened to you today?
Laughing defies difficult circumstances their thievery of your joy. So when it is raining inside and out, look for the humor that may be hiding in your troubles. Laughing, even later, will release your hear and restore your joy.
Looking for a good reason to smile? Check out Renown Health’s newest Pinterest board, Pawsitive Pals .