When she woke briefly during her last illness
and found all her family around her bedside:
“Am I dying or is this my birthday?”
– Lady Nancy Astor
Hey Friends, life is short. Laugh . . . a lot.
At what point was it decided to suppress laughter and leave it to the little people? We take us way too serious. Do you find yourself covering your mouth or stifling a laugh? Cut it out (you can’t cut it out!).
Afford yourself the luxury of hearty extended laughter at least twice a day and several short bursts throughout the day. This is one instance where letting it all hang out is permissible and legal. This is not only enjoyable but healthy also.
Here are just a few benefits of laughter:
An excellent means of fighting stress. Laughter decreases stress hormones and we know that stress is linked to all sorts of health woes.
Studies have shown the ability to use humor can raise the level of infection-fighting antibodies and boost levels of immune cells at the same time.
Laughter is able to trigger the releasing of endorphins (your body’s natural feel-good neurotransmitters). Endorphins can temporarily relieve pain and promote an overall sense of well-being.
Laughter can help protect against heart attacks and other cardiovascular problems by increasing (and maintaining) blood flow. The endothelium (inner lining of the walls of your arteries) plays a vital role in blood flow maintenance by regulating the diameter of the blood vessels. Endothelium damage is a factor in cardiovascular diseases. Stress seems to narrow the endothelium while laughing expands it. Laughing helps keep your artery walls fit, helping to maintain good blood flow.
Laughter can be shared or done solo. Laughter is contagious and when shared can bind people, increasing happiness and intimacy (physical and emotional).
Laughter has a way of lifting spirits and making burdens a bit lighter, helping us to forget tensions in our busy daily lives.
It is a great way to workout! Now, it won’t replace the gym altogether, but, hearty laughter can burn calories equivalent to several minutes on a rowing machine or an exercise bike. Feel those burning abs!
Laughing can improve your social life. People are eager to share a joke or humorous story with someone they know will laugh. We are drawn to funny folks and those that enjoy a good laugh. Who wants to talk to a grumpy and have their day impaired? Maybe you could share one with a grumpy and improve their day instead.
Smiling increases your face value!
No, life is not all fun and games, but we need to afford ourselves the necessities (notice I didn’t write luxuries) that can be had. Laughter is easily attained even if you’re a grumpy who wants to change.
Here are some ideas for you to get abdominal hurting, red-faced blissful laughter:
- My favorite place is the library (free, free, free). Movies, books, and especially audio tapes and cd’s. Most of us spend considerable time in our cars. It truly can be a university on wheels. I split time with educational, motivational, and hysterical. From some gifted speakers, you get all three. And, you can’t hardly take so-and-so seriously for cutting you off while laughing your head off. It doesn’t seem quite so serious an offense.
- Take a loved one to a funny play, movie or to a comedy club.
- Call a funny person you know that is sure to make you laugh.
- Internet. This is one of my least favorites because of the many distractions. Implement discipline so that if you are only looking for a good laugh, you do not get sidetracked on some news story that will have the opposite effect. Stick with a winner to avoid surfing.
- Go to a barbecue or party.
You deserve a good laugh today (and tomorrow). Indulge in laughter for your health, your spirit, for you.
Alas, this wouldn’t be complete without sharing one of my favorite jokes.
There was a young boy working in the produce section of a grocery store, while he was working an elderly lady walked up to him and said, “Hey sonny, could you get me a half of a head of lettuce?” The boy responded, “No ma’am, we don’t sell those.” The woman said, “Could you cut me half of a head of lettuce because I’m only going to use half of a head so I don’t want to waste the other half. So, please cut me half.” So the boy finally agreed realizing she wouldn’t take no for an answer. He went in the back and started cutting the head of lettuce in half when his manager walks in and asks, “What are you doing?” The boy said “There is a crazy old lady out there who only wants half of a head of lettuce.” The boy turned around and the old lady was standing right there behind him so the boy said quickly, “And this nice lady wants the other half!” The next day the boss calls the boy into his office and says, “Son, that was the quickest thinking I’ve ever seen! Where are you from?” The boy said, “Buffalo, New York home of ugly women and hockey players.” The boss said “I’ll have you know my wife is from Buffalo!” The boy said, “What hockey team did she play for?”
Share your laugh today with someone in need of a good one. Laugh today.
Get out there and live it, and live it Loud.
Remember, you are the only you, you have!