Having a sense of humour is widely spoken of as being an important element to hold in one’s outlook on life, especially since Covid has entered our lives. How we live our life is dependant on our viewpoint which has developed as we are naturally conditioned by our environment. We become conditioned as small children, watching, learning, listening, expressing and experimenting with what works in our attempts to get along and receive love. in particular from our parents.
Oddly enough, as adults we may not lose this unconscious habit of seeking love and approval. We may look for it outside of ourselves and it may is related to our sense of who we are, whether we feel we belong and are a worthwhile person. Laughter is similar, part of our growing up and conditioning, which is also cultural and consequent to our background and you can understand then why everyone’s sense of humour is unique.
There are many reasons why we laugh, which are mostly unconscious as a release, to alter our mood. We can laugh because we are happy, sad, in pain, feeling uncomfortable, in fact for innumerable reasons. Laughter needs cultivation, as does any good habit. Children laugh freely and as we grow up, we tend to close up as a general rule, become self conscious and limit the amount of laughter in our daily lives.
An Indian physician, Dr Madan Kataria started the free community laughter club movement 26 years ago and now there are thousands worldwide. Lynette became involved 17 years ago when she started the Boronia Laughter Club which transitioned into the Ferntree Gully Laughter Club. The experience of running one has given her first-hand experience of the transformation in members’ lives.
We laugh together for the health benefits and initially for newcomers, they begin with ‘fake it till you make it’, because the body cannot differentiate between real and pretend laughter. How it is done is like improv theatre, pretending to laugh in different scenarios. This makes it easy to laugh without jokes or props and very quickly, the laughter is spontaneous, automatic and genuine.
Laughter sends positive messages to our body, releasing endorphins, resulting in us feeling uplifted, lighter, joyous and energised. There are enormous benefits from what we do, which is basically adults engaging in playful, childlike fun activities. Remember too, a laughter yoga session includes deep breathing, which helps to oxygenate the blood and is very cleansing for the body. Deep breathing is calming, lowering stress levels within us as well.
Attending a laughter session creates an opportunity to come out of your comfort zone. Laughter is an aerobic exercise and there are innumerable health benefits, physically, emotionally, mentally, socially and spiritually. Laughing for one’s health has become widely researched and it is now understood that it benefits all who do it. It does not discriminate and is an inclusive activity or pastime.
Laughter Yoga, as it is known, nowadays is incorporated as a wellness activity in business and other organisations. How wonderful indeed. Perhaps you will experience it in this way or by attending a laughter club. Either way, it is recommended attending a few times for you to discover how it helps you. Otherwise, you will never truly know how incorporating more laughter into your daily life will assist you. Lynette suggests making laughter a daily habit.
The Ferntree Gully Laughter Club meets every Sunday during lockdown at 11am on Zoom. Please message or email Lynette if you wish to become involved. Message Lynette on 0425 799 258 or email: email@example.com.
Click button below to go to the laughter club website page.
Cheerio for now. Until next time, love and laughter blessings. I look forward to hearing how you go with these ponderings.
Lots of Love and Laughter, Lynette Mitchell.