This is a laughing matter!
Content provided by a guest contributor.
When last did you laugh so much that your stomach started to ache or you just could not stop? Yesterday, last month or over a year ago?
Well humour is one of the most powerful coping strategies in life. Did you know? (Yes this sounds a bit like the Chappies chewing gum wrapper!):
- Laughter reduces the stress hormones and increases the “happy” endorphin hormones. This in turn boosts our immune system and keeps us healthy.
- Laughter is a physical release of stress and results in making our body feel more relaxed. When we are relaxed we “give off positive energy” to others and are more able to go with the flow.
- Humour is a distraction from the heaviness or seriousness that life’s challenges may bring and helps us to travel through life more lightly.
- Laughing at ourselves enables us to take ourselves and situations less personally. It helps us to accept and be compassionate toward our humanness!
- Humour creates bonds between people and diffuses potential conflict situations. So step out mentally from an uncomfortable situation, find the humour and share it with the other person. Many clients like to do business with easy-going and happy service providers.
- Seeing the humour in situations enables us to be more cheerful and increases our ability to tune in to our gut feel. In fact, intuition thrives on light and playful situations.
So how can we bring more laughter and humour into our lives?
- Share jokes at work on a regular basis or read joke books or blogs
- Watch comedies on TV and at the movies
- Play games like Pictionary, 30 seconds. See it as a game not a competition.
- Consciously look for the humorous side to something you did. Share it with others
- Do something frivolous and childlike. Children are often our best teachers – sit and play with them and observe what they find funny. Cultivate this way of looking at the world. The inner critic may instantaneously respond by saying: "There is no way I am going to do something childish". It is about becoming innocent like a child and spontaneous in the moment
- Look out for cheerful and humorous people. Notice what they do as well as how they make you feel
The key really, is to find out what makes you laugh and to introduce more of this into your day to day living. Find something humorous every day for more than 21 days and this will become a positive pattern and coping skill in your life.
Richard Branson, from the Virgin business empire, is a brilliant example of someone who has a playful mind set toward life and business. He has fun while he works and look where he is today!
“Nothing has control over you if you can laugh at it.” Sonia Choquette
Article written by Linda Germishuizen, Executive, Career and Life Coach.