Benefits of Laughter
Mental, Emotional and Spiritual Benefits Of Laughter Yoga
Laughter Yoga is a new navigation program to help you navigate through life and stay "on top".
* Laughter makes it easier to cope with life and its challenges
* Laughter puts us intensely in the moment. The ability to fully live and experience the "now" is of utmost importance because it is the only moment where we can experience joy.
* People who laugh don't worry as much as people who don't laugh, and as such enjoy life more. Laughter makes their circumstances seem less serious and therefore tolerable. A playful approach to everyday things is a key factor in keeping healthy. Daily chores are less burdensome when we laugh while doing them. We aren't always having fun, but we do have a lot more fun with laughter than without.
* Laughter helps us cope with challenge and conflict better because it gives us a better perspective. It shrinks the hurts of everyday life to a smaller, if not inconsequential size. They appear less overwhelming. It allows us to stand above an issue, acknowledge it, and treat it lightly in the awareness that we are touched by the issue but not contained by it. Most of us have a tendency to pay such close attention to our issues that they eventually become a huge part of all we see. If we are able to laugh about serious things, they simply can't be that huge. All the uncomfortable traits of the people we interact with in our life suddenly seem both unimportant and entirely bearable when we can laugh about them. We are even able to convince ourselves they are somehow endearing, and we view them with indulgent affection.
* Laughter makes us feel good because it defuses three of the most painful emotions (fear, anger and boredom) by releasing them. That release, in turn, prevents or stops conflicts, eases tension, and helps people to see one another's point of view better.
* Laughter helps us cope with problems better. When we trust we drop our defenses. As laughter opens us up and allows us to be vulnerable, we become willing to make changes. We no longer need to keep score of the good things we do for others. We lose track, and we don't even care. Laughter makes us generous to a fault and we feel better giving than receiving.
* Laughter lifts us up and makes life worth living. You experience that elusive "state of being" called relaxation. It makes us stress less and enjoy the company of other people more.
* Laughter Yoga aims to develop joyfulness, not happiness. In contrast to "happiness", "joyfulness" is the unconditional commitment to have fun despite all of the possible problems that we are faced with in life. Joyfulness is primarily a physical phenomenon. You fake it until you get it. The decision may come from the brain, but the process is physical. Because the body and the mind are so closely inter-connected, when you "do good" you "feel good". "Motion Creates Emotion". Being joyful "doing good" actually changes the body chemistry and fosters a healthier state of being.
Laughter builds self-confidence
* Laughter makes us feel safer and eases much of our awkwardness.
* Laughter puts anxiety on a back burner for everyone. We can't laugh and worry at the same time. When we release anxiety (a product of the mind) through laughter, our love (the nature of our heart) surges to the surface and we are able to fully experience and enjoy it.
Laughter is an important social skill that keeps communications fun
* Laughter interrupts the power struggle. It is really hard to lock down in conflict with someone when you are laughing. When people enter a power struggle and let playfulness drop by the wayside, they lose touch with their laughter, their trust in life and others. This only leads to a downward vicious circle that benefits no one. It leads us to focus on our own needs and not the needs of the people around us.
* Laughter allows people to be more open with each other because it creates safety, and issues don't seem as awesome. It allows us to express ourselves more clearly because we think more clearly when we laugh.
* When we laugh with others, we ourselves are fun, and we provide good company. Regular doses of laughter and play also take the work out of staying in love for a lifetime.
* Laughing for no reason makes us more likable because it minimizes our need to gain self-confidence by analyzing and judging other people.
* When we laugh with others, criticism seems to collapse. We are able to let them be themselves and enjoy them even more for that.
* Laughter breaks down the instinctive barriers between people and allows them to trust each other. The fears most of us have about other people are rooted in the past. We lose them when we laugh and fully experience the present.
* Laughter is a pathway to unconditional love. Loving with the mind is a two way street (I love / I hate and everything in between). Loving with the heart is only a one way street: I love, I love, I love. Also, the bonding qualities of laughter allow us to feel such emotional closeness that we want to be physically and spiritually close as well. It is something deeper than just biology. It is a part of the mystery of laughter that we have yet to solve.
* Laughing with others preserves our dignity - a need for relationships and the people in them.
Laughing for no reason develops our sense of humor and helps us find more laughter in our lives.
* Laughing in a group for no reason helps to progressively break down inhibition and other mental blocks which have been created by oneself, one's parents and society. Once these barriers are removed, the infinite potential to laugh unfolds automatically and a sense of humor starts flowing.
Unfolding infinite potential through laughter
* Every human being has infinite potential to perform and achieve anything he desires, but most of his power lies dormant and untapped. The human brain has a left and a right hemisphere. The left side of the brain is analytical, logical, calculative and concerned with learning skills. You can't learn some things beyond a certain limit. The right side of the brain is concerned with intuition, imagination, inventions, music, art, creativity, meditation and healing. The power of the right side of the brain is unlimited. One of the easiest ways to stimulate the right side of the brain is by playfulness. By being playful one can become more creative and imaginative. It will unfold the unlimited potential of our beings.
The problem with most of us is that we can't be playful all the time or with everybody. A laughter club is an ideal platform which gives an opportunity to be playful in a group, without the feelings of embarrassment.
Laughter Yoga helps bring forth the best in human nature. Laughing for no reason is born of right brain activity and therefore lacks reason and defies analysis. It is deliciously out of control because it is not a rational process. It is a purely physical process that does not need anything the mind has to offer (i.e. a reason, some sense of humor, or a belief of happiness). It brings forth the uncontrolled and unsubdued voice of the heart / the soul / your higher self that expresses and helps to manifest all of the intrinsic qualities of human nature. It is a state of mind-body in which the dominant emotions are pleasure, peace, love, and joy and as such it imparts a sense of well being and freshness.
Laughter changes "who we are" for the better. Humans are creatures of habit. Most of what we consider our identity or "who we are" is really a series of learned behaviors or "what we do". Regular practice of Laughter Yoga helps reprogram negative responses into positive ones (e.g. we argue laughing; we laugh at an imaginary high credit card bill.) Nothing is taken away from the importance of the event except our reaction to it. People who saw themselves as "shy" discover themselves assertive public speakers; short-tempered individuals learn to control their moods and defuse their anger by "laughing it out", etc.
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