Can I Incorporate Laughter and Affirmations to be More Mindful?

Can I Incorporate Laughter and Affirmations to be More Mindful?

The good news is that we can reprogram ourselves with more positivity and presentness through combining the power of laughter and positive affirmations. Our mindfulness is enhanced when we combine these together and it can be done either alone or with others.

Think about what it is that you would like to affirm, to improve in your life. It may be a physical material thing, or more obtuse, such as a change in behaviour which raises your joy quotient. Give this suggestion a go, and let it be as simple, short and sweet as you like. I will share here some affirmation ideas with you.

Firstly, I suggest you check in to what your body is telling you and adjust it if needs be. If you are feeling flat and dejected, your body language will reflect this. Observe and maintain an upward, positive manner. You can practice and see how you feel when you do the laughter mindfulness exercise any old how and then see the difference it makes when you choose to be aware and bring all of you into the present time.

Begin by taking a positive stance or sitting position, placing your arms, hands, and feet in strategic positions. An example would be hands together in a prayer position, saying your chosen affirmation, for instance, ‘I am happy, I am healthy, I am abundant’ then laughing out loud.

You could stand tall, with arms outstretched above your head and repeat the affirmation. I like the idea of doing this with my fingers wide open, then closing them into fists, bringing my hands down onto my chest. Even add the word ‘yes’ said with vim and vigour. This option gives a more powerful feeling, that of drawing what you wish to affirm towards yourself, making it stronger. Even more powerful would be to repeat the affirmation three times and then add the words ‘Let the rain of blessings fall!’.

Do you already use affirmations? I have done so on a regular basis for many years and it’s recommended that you say affirmations daily, at about the same time, for a full lunar month, 28 days. They can be done more than that if you feel the need.

Here are some great affirmations for you to try out and no doubt, you can come up with some of your own, or favourite ones-

I am happy, I am healthy, I am abundant.

Laughter and fun come my way when I am being myself.

I create laughter and feelings of happiness and joy wherever I go.

I have lots of ideas, life inspires me.

I am in love with life.

I can do this. (Or if you do it in a group) I, You, We, Can Do this!

Laughter Affirmation Guidelines:

Long term, keep your mind consciously and unconsciously seeking laughter and positivity in your life. Repeat the affirmations three times and then say ‘Let the rain of blessings fall!’ You may imagine being enveloped in a loving, coloured mist. Most likely you will find that fun, being positive minded and laughter take place more effortlessly than before. Endeavour to do them daily for a month.

Your energy and mind will create it for you even when you are occupied with other thoughts and concerns. You are programming your subconscious mind with beneficial energy, to help you manifest and become who you would genuinely love to become. In other words, you are working with the Law of Attraction.

I look forward to hearing how you go with it.

Cheerio for now. Until next time, laughter blessings.

Lots of Love and Laughter, Lynette Mitchell.

Lynette & John Mitchell lead the free Community Ferntree Gully Laughter Club, in person 2nd, 4th & 5th Sundays, Zoom the others.

Phone: 0425 799 258 or John on 0425 798 115

Email: lynette@laughterforliving.com.au

Power and Colour in Your Life

Power and Colour in Your Life

Hi there, life is still topsy turvy, which is expected to continue for a very long while. Is that bad? Is that good? Or just as it is? Do you agree, we can make the most of it and take it as an opportunity, not a hindrance? Life has become even more testing and stressful than most of us can recall. Covid restrictions fluctuate, which can (but not necessarily) lead us to feel confused, flat, stressed and more. Can you relate to this, where you feel lacking in vim, vigour, enthusiasm and colour?

With the advent of Covid-19 most of us have been affected in major ways. Our freedom has been withdrawn; we may feel shut in, shut down, trapped etcetera. It has caused us to become flat, colourless, apathetic, in victim consciousness, even angry. We may not be absolutely aware of the plethora of feelings that move through us. The manner we have been affected by the pandemic either positively or negatively, may not have truly registered. Would you agree? 

It feels appropriate to share about colour and power, which go together in our expression. So much of what we do is connected in all aspects of our lives, can we recognise it as being the case, and how there is that wonderful interconnection with everything that we do? Nothing is random.

In this context references to power are positive, such as being inspired by love and to have self-determination. We do not want power for the sake of power, which is based by fear and the negative ego.  

Colour equates to many things besides what we see as we normally relate to colour. It can also be the feelings we hold inside us, whether our life is vibrant, we are enthused, upbeat. Whether or not we usually feel drawn to wear colourful clothes or use it in in our daily expression. For example, our website, cooking, artistic expression, pictures, wall colours – the list could be endless, no doubt you can see that too. With the restrictions most of us have had to curtail our chosen extra activities, which gave us stimulation, learning, interest. Colour is lacking and we feel powerless. Most of us are somewhat affected anyhow, whether we realise the significance of it all, or otherwise.

Power is a huge topic, one aspect being how we frequently self-sabotage ourselves using negative self-talk. This automatically leads us to all sorts of unhelpful behaviour, as when we realise that we are being passive, we may go in the opposite direction which is to be too forceful. From my experience, when we decide to be assertive, it can tip the balance until we come back into the harmonious middle. We are not practiced in positive self-talk, which is best to come from a loving space, instead of forcing us to be and act differently. Change can be gradual. I can share some affirmations with you to help reinstall positive words, removing the negative power that can influence by us constantly worrying, being full of judgment and negativity. We become conditioned by everything around us from birth and on the most part, it goes unnoticed.

How about we deliberately decide to bring more colour and power into our life again? We decide how to go about it, what will work for us. We have power, determination and courage within, although it may be latent, untapped. We can choose to make a difference, to learn from our restrictions and be more. More love, vibrancy, colour, courage, harmonious, assertive power. Little by little, one step at a time, one moment, one day at a time. What can you do today to bring back that spark of joy, to feel uplifted? To begin with, there would be a simple behaviour that you can apply yourself, which will help you to turn the tide. Be open for ideas and inspirations to come to you.

What I suggest you do is become aware of how you are actually feeling and where you wish to be. Even good habits can become dull, we slip into an unconscious routine which may be outworn. Work with me on this, see what you can do to create new habits and let go of the old ones, even for the time being, as an experiment. Humans thrive on stimulation, interaction with each other, having interests, hobbies.  And of course, because I run a free community laughter club with husband John, can offer the suggestion to bring more laughter to yourself, to laugh often would be one fabulous decision to choose as a positive new habit. We meet on Zoom and in person behind the Ferntree Gully Library and we invite you to join us anytime you like.

You can start by doing an everyday habit differently consciously. Stop living as an automotron; bring greater awareness into each day, each hour, each moment. I like the idea of adding colour and that will not resonate with everyone. Many people are not drawn to colour as I am, you may not have many colourful clothes, nor have much colour around you in your home. You may prefer to express yourself in a quieter, more refined way. And yet, we have the power within for anything to change, if we choose it. 

Adding colour to your life implies physically and metaphorically. It can mean to lighten up, be more fun loving, positive, adventurous, different, a risk taker. Think about it, can you do this for yourself, to step out of your rut into something new.

To consider colour and choices in our life, we may like to sit down and do a little review of where we are at right now and our direction. Are our choices and what we do each day going towards what we wish to happen, or moving away from due to lack of focus and direction? 

Let’s refer to ourselves as ‘Colourful Me’. Colourful Me discovers that each day can be a new adventure, that there is always something unseen to uncover and be moved by. It helps to lift ourselves out of a mundane routine and implement something else to experience or experiment with. For example, a new hairstyle, hobby, challenge. 

What would your Colourful Me reach out for? I feel one big thing we can all agree on, is the upliftment when we see a beautiful sunset, which is made even brighter when outside somewhere in nature whilst watching it. Most people have learned in this last year to value the simple things of life and also that there is much to gain by connecting with nature more often, to do outdoorsy things. The garden has become a source of connection with nature in the past year for a lot of people.  

There’s been a renewed appreciation of pet ownership. People are undertaking buying a dog or cat with a loftier understanding of what this really means, that we can work with pets, together, complementing each other. They are not disposable, have even become scarce, leading to them be truly valued and treasured. 

Be careful what you put out for, as it may come back for you to experience the consequences. Are things in our life because they have been put there because of our choice, or for another reason? This is something for us to experiment with, as regards to become increasingly aware whether we are doing something because we have chosen it, or because we have been told by another what to do. Perhaps there’s the aspect of our conditioning, doing things because it is expected in the roles that we live. 

How we live our life may feel like there is no other option, or going back, rewinding. Karmically there may not be an alternative, with no opportunity to get out of a binding situation. Does this sound like you?  

If we can’t change our circumstances right away or at all, there is that saying about being able to change one’s attitude. Even prisoners of war were able to come through their experience when they held hope in their hearts. 

Things to ponder for you. More laughter. Introduce colour, determination and hope. Review your life. Make new choices. Work towards your goals. Increase your focus. Do something different. Laugh more! Take up meditation and work on your personal growth. I have classes you might like to try out.

I hope this stirs up something in you and would love to meet you for some laughter therapy. 

Cheerio for now. 

Until next time, laughter blessings. I look forward to hearing from you.  

Lots of Love and Laughter, Lynette Mitchell. 

Photo courtesy of Milada Vigerova

5 Benefits of Laughter Yoga for Seniors

It feels timely to focus on being a Senior and share below the five main benefits of Laughter Yoga for Seniors in our society, as outlined by Indian Physician Dr Madan Kataria. He was the Founder of the free community laughter club movement in 1985 and since then, research on laughter is having an increasing impact all around the world.

At our laughter clubs, the majority of people who come are women and in their senior years. We have a few gentlemen also, however coming along to laugh may be a little daunting for some people and especially to the men. Mind you we highly recommend ‘getting out of your comfort zone’.

May I also suggest you consider becoming involved as a volunteer, involved in a laughter club in Victoria? It is easy, a commitment well worthwhile and rewarding. From what I observe people who commit to regular laughter find, without realising it, their lives becoming transformed. Club members have shared how it helps them move on and be involved in life, one after being in a depression for some years and the other simply feeling rather flat and without purpose.

As I often share, it is wonderful for developing brain neurons (Neuroplasticity) as is singing and dancing. You can see people’s eyes light up and feel their energy become lighter, more fun filled, joyous, spontaneous, when in the process of a laughter session.

Obviously, it is best for it to be regular, for a facilitator to attend an aged care place or for people to come along to a laughter club regularly. Language is not a barrier either, or inability to speak, the language of laughter and love surpasses all. Hearts connect and we are very honoured to be able to share the laughter and upliftment with those willing to do it with us. We finish each session with a short meditation, some people haven’t even experienced that before and relish it. Sometimes we include some music for a short sing along and occasionally a few residents get up for a little dance movement. It is such a joy to see the change in their demeanour when they do so, a real joy.

Following then are the 5 main benefits of Laughter Yoga, as outlined in the professional training manual of Laughter Yoga International. They do not say all the physical, emotional, social benefits, rather concentrating on the general ones that are so easily recognisable for why seniors would benefit from more laughter in their life.

1. Adds More Laughter to Life: With advancing age we laugh less or stop laughing. We get out of the habit of laughing and often with dementia and Alzheimer’s that is more so the case. Laughter Yoga is a physically oriented technique, is an ideal exercise that provides many health benefits without using mental and cognitive abilities.

2. Promotes Physical Health: With the wear and tear of old age many seniors develop ailments like high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis etc. Laughter Yoga facilitates healing by strengthening the immune system, improves blood circulation and increases oxygen to the body’s cells. It is also a cardiovascular workout.

3. Improves Mental Health: Isolation, loneliness and depression are common among older adults as they lose loved ones and their health begins to decline. Mental health is improved by boosting neurotransmitters, dopamine and serotonin.

4. Building Social Bonds: Laughter Yoga helps bring people together and improve their social bonding. Retirees and able-bodied older adults who attend our laughter clubs develop friendships and rapport. This helps them to move on, be resilient and decrease loneliness at the same time increasing their quality of life.

5. Longevity: Laughter Yoga helps us when we feel we have lost our way giving us greater reason and purpose to continue living a full and rewarding life. It is a simple and easy routine, which is practiced by people all throughout the world in their 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. As the population is increasingly older every day, Laughter Yoga is a tool for transformational aging and increased longevity.

From my personal experience Laughter Yoga does all of the above and gives me a lift in my life and relationships. Life becomes more fun filled and you can also be a part of that. It is free and we love to laugh together. You are not committed to attend every time, only as much as you can fit in with your (probably) very busy life!

Thank you for your interest in reading about this very important topic. I hope to see you soon on either a Saturday or Sunday.

Cheers, Lynette.

Acknowledgement Dr Kataria, Founder of Laughter Yoga International

 

Could Laughter Yoga be Part of Your Self Support in 2019?

Could Laughter Yoga be Part of Your Self Support in 2019?

Hello and how have you been since the start of the year? Are you embarking on new things? Will you be joining us at either the Knoxfield or Ferntree Gully Laughter Clubs? They are on at 10.30am on Saturdays and Sundays. Links to information on the website pages are: KnoxfieldFerntree Gully.

Are you okay? If you have been meaning to join one of our two local laughter clubs, either Ferntree Gully or Knoxfield, I encourage you to be like the Nike motto. ‘JUST DO IT!’. Furthermore, it’s FREE. The company is GREAT. And you will be welcomed into the laughter ‘family’.

New Year’s Resolutions.

Are they chosen in a spontaneous moment, or, in part influenced by others as something you ‘should’ do. Most of us have been conditioned that we ‘should’ make New Year’s Resolutions. This implies that we are not okay, inadequate and need to pick up our game. Depending on our underlying motive, they could alternatively be used for positive growth.

We often experience guilt when we don’t succeed and there is a natural tendency for humans to be resistant to change. We like to know what is going to happen and feel insecure not knowing for certain how our future will play out.

Resolutions can be good at any time and especially if our motive is coming from love and congruent with our goals.

There are plenty of opportunities for self-improvement and besides using laughter to support us, we may have been considering slowing down our activities agenda by adding some quiet time. Or not, it may be something completely the opposite! Have you been meaning to learn or get better at the art of meditation? There is so much that we are able to try out and see if it works for us, to give pleasure or lower the everyday stress. I am now booking students for a Monday evening personal growth class, which may be a lightbulb moment on reading this piece of information?

Self-Acceptance and a Nightly review

This feels like a regular topic related to self-esteem and sharing about the nightly review process. If you do wish to work on bringing more love and self-acceptance to your day, it is worth creating this good habit. At the end of each day I ask myself “Did I bring more love to what I was involved in today? Was I kinder and more self-accepting, both to myself and others? Was I without criticism and judgment?”.

You must work on YOU first, because if you are not okay with yourself, you will be unable to help, support and share the love with others you encounter.

Back to basics, remember that when we laugh wholeheartedly and allow ourselves to be doing child-like playful activities, it is one of the very, very best things we can do for our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health. The laughter clubs run in all weather, hail, rain or shine. Sometimes we may even begin feeling a tad flat and this quickly changes. We start laughing and deep breathing, making us feel invigorated, uplifted and happy. This method of joining together brings belonging, comradeship, and a new way of living one’s life. We take the spirit of laughter with us. Do come and give it a go. It truly is transformative and life changing.

This photo was taken during a session at the Federation Square Laughter Club. I recently returned to being a Committee member of Laughter Clubs Victoria Inc. (LCVI) that puts these laughter sessions on. They are on the 1st and 3rd Sunday at 11am and are free. Read more here.

May 2019 be beneficially memorable for you. Keep on keeping on! And remember, to never, ever, ever give up!!!

Cheerio for now. Lynette.

Disclaimer: Information shared is intended to support you and is from my personal understanding, experience and is generalised. I am not responsible for how you take it on board.