Fun and laughter is an important part of any day. FISH Philosophy incorporate fun into their corporate training, Richard Branson is a great advocate of fun and it is a natural part of our childhood.
Fun and laughter are powerful ways to overcome feelings of anxiousness, frustration, anguish and even pain. It puts wonderful highlights into any day and has fabulous health benefits. It allows us to remain much more positive in challenging or complex situations.
Laughter helps us to relax. Research shows that when we laugh our parasympathetic tone is improved and our sympathetic nervous system becomes less active. In general terms the parasympathetic nervous system aids digestion, relaxation and other aspects of the human body that respond in the restful state. The sympathetic nervous system prepares the body for intense activity and relates also to the ‘fight or flight’ mode.
When we are relaxed we feel more in control, our heart rate is more stable, our blood pressure is lower and there is in general, less tension in the body. In a more relaxed state we are able to think more clearly and therefore think through solutions, outcomes and possibilities in a more rational way void of over reacting emotions.
Laughter increases our immune system and therefore keeps us healthier in general. It releases endorphins, dopamine and high concentrations of other hormones that enable us to feel happier, to feel compassion and tolerance. This enables us to deal with pain and stress more easily, and improves our cognitive processes.
Laughter produces brain waves very similar to the state of trance or hypnosis. Self-hypnosis creates possibilities, solutions and outcomes – it talks directly to the unconscious mind.
Laughter assists mental health and self-esteem and that has to be good for you!
And isn’t always great to have a good laugh with a friend, or colleague or loved one. There is nothing more engaging nor contagious as a smile or a laugh.
Sometimes we can succumb to life pressures. I prescribe daily injections of fun and laughter because it is one of the best things we can do for ourselves. Whether it is a paddle in a puddle to a dance in the rain; a memory of a time where you laughed so much your sides hurt or a little chuckle at a humorous thought or a silly joke. Sing along to an “oldie and a goodie” or dance as if you just don’t care.
While fun and laughter may not resolve problems, it can soften them offering us other ways of dealing with them more resourcefully and in ways that result in better outcomes. It allows us to engage with our creative being. It can also help to bring time and thought to refocus on what is truly important in life.
Personally, I think a day without laughter is a day wasted and take personal responsibility for creating it.
Christine Walter is a Hypnotherapist, Life Coach, mBit Coach and NLP Master Practitioner and a trainer of these modalities. She has her own practise moving between Auckland and Waihi area. She is a founding director of ANZCAL, NZ’s coaching accreditation organisation. You can learn more about Christine by going to her website www.lodestone.nz. Or phone 021 0709 138.