When we laugh we feel good. Here are 11 fun ways we can bring laughter into our day and see why laughter is the best medicine!
It’s safe to say that laughter has long been a coping mechanism for many a century. Imagine a world without laughter and you could point to the start of the end for humanity.
When recessions (or a pandemic) hits, what do people do? After panic, they aim to release that built up stress. They seek to cope. Some may meditate, others exercise, others hit the bottle, others rant.
We deal with stress in different ways, but laughter is the best medicine for putting a smile back on our faces. It’s simply the fastest way to turn a frown upside down.
Why Is Laughter The Best Medicine?
Laughter is simply contagious. In a time when a certain Covid-19 virus is also worryingly contagious, we think of contagion as a bad thing. However, laughter is not a contagion we should try and stop. We need more of it to reap its benefits in our lives.
When we do we release dopamine and feel good, but laughter also ‘strengthens your immune system, boosts mood, creates connection, diminishes pain, and protects you from the damaging effects of stress‘. (ref: Helpguide.org).
We search far and wide for miracle cures but we tend to have this weapon already in our arsenal. So why don’t we laugh more often?
Certain situations might not call for it, that’s understandable, but as adult we spend far too much time in ‘professional or serious mode’. We laughed so much as children. It’s a sign we were having fun, but also that our physical and emotional wellbeing were in good balance.
We are also more creative as children, and it’s no coincidence. Laughter helps fuel creativity too, as we see in some of the listed ideas below:
11 Ways To Laugh More In Our Day
1) WATCH FUNNY SHOWS AND COMEDIANS
This one is a no-brainer. When we find time to unwind, watching something funny can really heal your body and make you feel better.
Comedians are generally smart people, and you can also learn a lot about current world affairs in a much more satisfying way than getting drawn into serious news talk all the time. Avoiding too much seriousness in your life correlates to your ability to have more fun in life. Comedy helps in this regard whilst still educational.
CHALLENGE: Make sure you watch at least one funny show or comedy performance this week.
2) WATCH FUNNY VIDEOS OF OTHER PEOPLE LAUGHING
We’ve all probably seen funny videos of cats and dogs doing cat and dog things. It’s what Youtube was founded upon. How about hearing someone else laugh? Take El Risitas, a guy who became a Youtube sensation because of his infectious laugh (RIP).
When you hear someone else laugh you can’t help but laugh. This could be seen as the same as watching comedians, but it doesn’t have to be just a comedy show. If you’ve ever heard someone else in a room have a laughing fit then you likely couldn’t help but start laughing too.
CHALLENGE: If you are ever down, and don't feel like you can laugh yourself (or even if you can), start by finding funny videos of other people laughing, or find an audio of people laughing.
3) FIND FUN NEW ACTIVITIES & EXPERIENCES
We might be able to travel or experience too many new experiences right now (pandemic era), but we can still find experiences online, and soon enough we will be able to seek out more new experiences. We likely will do so more than ever too, as in a post-pandemic world people will be very eager to live their life and not take it so much for granted.
Laughing yoga is a great example. Instead of watching or hearing people laugh, we can also get into the action ourselves as a community of people who laugh together (albeit online for now).
CHALLENGE: Find a Laughing Yoga class where you concentrate on laughing instead of breathing, or try a completely new experience and feel the adrenaline release in laughter. Or do it yourself through meditation. Simply find a place to sit and relax, place focus on your breath, and release all tension from your body. Next, find something really funny in mind (or a photo that makes you laugh), and with the feeling of laughter then send it around your body to all areas. Go with the feeling and soon your whole body will be laughing and feel good.
It may feel forced at first, and a little awkward if a live experience, but it will release a multitude of endorphins as you laugh and enjoy the social aspect with other people.
When we try new experiences we open ourselves up to both perceived pain (fear of the unknown) and pleasure (from anticipation or resulting feeling from the experience being much more enjoyable than we first feared).
We also learn to laugh at ourselves and enjoy our initial clumsiness and innocence of being a newbie.
4) CREATE FUN GAMES WITH FRIENDS
Can you remember playing board games around the table with friends. Maybe some have reverted back to it since the pandemic forced lockdowns. It was, and is, a wonderful way to come together and get lost from the hardships of daily life and work.
Did you find yourself actually ‘bored’ playing board games. Likely not. Their name is an unfortunate mislead, as they are actually incredible energy filled.
CHALLENGE: The next time you invite friends around play a bored game with them, or even create your own versions of games, or entirely new games together. Fun and creative. Result.
5) FIND FUNNY CONTENT OR MEMES TO SEND EACH OTHER
Finding funny stuff to send your friends online doesn’t have to be just silly memes that are part of joining a trend. The more unique the better. When you are funny your creative side blossoms (or vice versa), and you see things around you that can suddenly have a funny context to them.
There are apps like TikTok today that help young people send creative, fun videos, and platforms like Patreon that help creatives get rewarded for their creativity.
We have the technology that helps us create and share a plentiful amount of funny content via social media platforms, such as Pinterest or Instagram, They help show off our creative side, but also bring laughter to us.
NOTE: when these platforms become a means to seek popularity or influencer status then it becomes another animal entirely, and this is where we have to be careful about how much time we spend getting sucked into these channels (which they are designed to make us do).
CHALLENGE: Create a funny meme video or post today to add to your social media.
6) CREATE YOUR OWN FUNNY STORY OR A COMIC STRIP
Taking us further on this create route, we can also bring out laughter through creating our own funny stories. Whether we drawing them or tell them it doesn’t really matter.
When we lay down a story we are activating our imagination, and this is a gold mine for potential funny moments to appear. We can look at objects in very different ways once we imagine them differently. Imagine a table walking down the road and serving people food as it goes, or a monkey that has a funny laugh, a bus with a funny horn.
CHALLENGE: Take these imaginative elements and create a short but funny story with them.
7) FIND FUNNY QUOTES, JOKES AND SAYINGS TO DISPLAY AROUND YOU
Being able to see funny things helps put you in that frame of mind. Laughter is the best medicine for when we feel down, so instead of just having positive quotes around us that tell us ‘to believe in ourselves’, a more powerful way for those messages to stick is to bring an element of humor to them.
We can place these ‘funny affirmations’ anywhere we are likely to see them, such as our fridge, but even in random places like sock drawers, so we randomly have a little laugh when we see a funny saying long after we remembered putting it there.
CHALLENGE: Write 10 'funny affirmation' that encourage you, but in a funny way. Or simply write down 10 jokes or funny saying you've found amusing.
8) HAVE VARIETY IN YOUR LIFE
When we ensure our life is versatile and not so routine or mundane our mind stays open to new ideas. We have seen the dining dead. Those who sit at restaurants with each other with no new conversation and tumbleweed floating around them.
Well, it’s not a boring person who creates that, or even a boring couple. It’s a lack of spice in a relationship to keep things fresh. When you have something new to bring to the table you don’t get lost in the dining dead scenario, and you find more ways to laugh or explore your relationship.
You think of special nights or themes, you have spontaneous trips on a shoestring budget, you find a variety of news and entertainment channels. You don’t watch the same comedian over and over, you find different subjects to laugh and learn about. Yet, when you find something that got you laughing, you find a way to repeat it to feed your happy soul again.
CHALLENGE: Create a special fun night, like a quiz night, for you and your friends for the next time you meet up. Then, the next time, create something totally different, such as creating a funny board game together. Find ways to keep the laughter coming!
9) BECOME A CHILD AGAIN AND GO WITH IT
When we were kids we just knew how to laugh and have fun. We tend to forget that we are allowed to laugh as adults. We forget that life can be fun if we want it to be. We feel we have to be serious and professional all the time to climb ladders, without thinking that maybe isn’t what constitutes success in life at all.
Maybe a good life is a blend of progression and fun, as we call The Edge Of Comfort at Richly.[INSERT_ELEMENTOR id=”5841″]
There will always be those who think life has to be serious, logical and in order, but they will be the ones missing out on getting more from their life, even if they do achieve their productivity goals.
When we see things with child eyes our imagination is fueled. We don’t think about how something has to fit into this or that, we don’t think it silly to create a random monster with 5 heads or summon an imaginary friend to help us against the evil toasterman.
We just go with it, and guess what? It becomes fun. We laugh. Learning to go with it like a child does makes life much more interesting and enjoyable.
CHALLENGE: Create an imaginary friend or character today. One that laughs a lot and takes themselves less seriously, which will lead you to find another resource for creating fun energy, and lead us to the next point nicely.
10) LEARN TO LAUGH WITH YOURSELF
We don’t laugh when we are too serious about ourselves. Sure, we all want to survive and get by in life, but if you want to thrive in life you won’t if you take everyday as a stepping-stone to the next brick in the empire that might never happen.
That doesn’t mean don’t have goals or ambitions, but enjoy the journey along the way, otherwise the empire will be a very dull achievement you won’t know how to enjoy once you get it.
When you take yourself less seriously it doesn’t mean folding on your ambition, but learning to deal with the issues in a way that takes the pressure directly off you (even difficult tasks and progressions).
CHALLENGE: Look at yourself in the mirror and laugh at something you are consciously wary of. If you are upset about your big nose, then just laugh at it and turn it into fuel for creating a positive outlook from a negative one.
Comedians always use themselves as the butt of their own joke. It takes away the arsenal and makes people relate to them more. No one likes a know-it-all or a sure thing. We actually take pride in the honesty of our (and others) fragility.
11) DON’T THINK OF IT AS A SCHEDULE. JUST LAUGH.
We too often think we have to work up to something, to find the right time, to schedule it in. Laughter is something that we can do at any time, anywhere. Not that we should, but the point is, we can.
You wouldn’t laugh when someone you know and care for gets injured. You don’t laugh like hyena through your whole day, you would be exhausted, and your superpower would wear off.
Like anything, laughter is best in moderation, but it’s especially important to laugh when we NEED to. At times of stress or pleasure, but probably not in a business meeting. That said, sometimes laughter can break the ice there too.
What we shouldn’t do is hold in our laughter, or suppress it. When we have an urge to laugh our body is generally telling us something, and as long as the situation matches then let it out.
We can all recall a laughing fit where we just couldn’t control it and felt an enormous surge of energy. These moments are rare and can’t be forced, but we can certainly find ways to bring out laughter in our day.
CHALLENGE: Laugh. Right now. Just laugh out loud. If you feel too shy, or the setting is inappropriate then fine, but at the next best opportunity then just laugh. Feel the benefit of a positive mood change instantly. Laugh at least once per day. Make that a habit worth cementing.
12) JUST SMILE.
When we smile we release endorphins to feel good, but we also make others feel good. In fact, a baby is more likely to receive their mother better if their mother smiles a lot at them. It’s why we see gawk-eyed parents speaking in baby-talk to their newborns and smiling from ear to ear.
Their baby probably thinks they are crazy, but also subconsciously trusts those who display this simple facial expression. Smiling is a sure-fire way to feel instantly good. It goes hand in hand with laughing, which is why it’s added to this list as an extra. If laughter is the best medicine then smiling ain’t far behind.
CHALLENGE: Simple, just smile right now. You'll feel better already!