When is the last time you laughed? I mean belly laughed so hard your eyes watered and you couldn’t catch your breath? I recently read that the average 4 year old laughs 300-400 times per day. That same article stated that the average 40 year old only laughs 3 times per day. THREE TIMES! As someone who is always joking and laughing I just could not believe that. Why do we LET life and circumstances steal our happiness? Happiness, like anything else, is a choice, and is based in perception of life events. Studies show that those who can laugh through adversity are better adjusted to handle future stress, and, as an added bonus, actually live longer.
That is just the tip of the iceberg, other health benefits of laughter include:
- Laughter brings people together and creates a sense of community
- Reduces stress by decreasing the number of stress hormones in the body
- Boosts the immune system by releasing T-Cells, which are designed to fight sickness
- Get an ab workout without having to go to the gym
- Reduces pain perception by releasing endorphins…one of your feel good hormones
- It burns calories
- Protects the heart by increasing blood flow
- Decreases distressing emotions and thoughts (happiness and negativity cannot coincide)
How to increase laughter in your life:
- Surround yourself with happy, positive people
- Lighten up, laugh at yourself when you get the chance
- Count your blessings…once you start, you will realize just how much you have to be thankful for
- Go to a comedy club, rent funny movies, find what makes you happy and dive head first into it
- Find uplifting, funny, positive people to follow on social media, and fill your pages with their feeds. Not only are you what you eat, you are also what you read, watch, etc.
- Even when you don’t feel like it. The more you laugh, the more others will laugh with you, which perpetuates more laughter (like begets like)
As you can see, the benefits of laughing are wide and far reaching. From mental to physical health, laughter really can help heal all, and can get you through not only the good times, but through the bad times of life as well. Not only will you feel better by laughing more, the secondary benefits just might turn around your entire outlook on life. Try it; what do you have to lose?