What is the best way to make yourself feel better when you're stressed, when you're panicking, or when you're sad? It is laughter. Today is International Laughter Day, so I thought I would talk about the benefits of laughter on your brain. Psst: I recommend you watch the video and do the exercises with me instead of reading the article this week... It works a lot better!

Laughter generates a feel-good chemical that runs through your bloodstream and instantly make you feel better. If you're reading this, you can also read the following description and try the three exercises with me. 

Exercise #1. Supporting Laugh

Let's say you're in a meeting, and one of your colleagues just told a joke. You didn't even hear it, you're not really sure what's funny, but it's your colleague, so you want to support them. Try a small, little supportive laugh. Try it. I'm serious!

Exercise #2. Embarrassed Laugh

Okay, for the second one, let's pretend that you're playing golf. You just gave the swing of your life, and now you're looking for the ball, and oops, you can't see it, because it's still there. You haven't even hit it. Go ahead and laugh an embarrassed laugh. Ready? Try it.

Exercise #3. Belly Laugh

All right, last exercise. You are at work, and there's this guy. You know, the guy that everyone likes, even though sometimes, he thinks he's better than everybody else. So that guy goes to the water fountain, reaches for the fountain, there's something wrong with it, and he gets completely splashed with water! He's drenched, and you're seeing that from really far away in a soundproof, "nobody can see you" office. You go for the full belly laughter, hands on your stomach. Go ahead, really loud! 

How do you feel? How would you like to feel like this when stuff hits the fan? Now the thing is, nobody got splashed here today. No, you were not at golf, and nobody told a joke. You were reading this article, and if you did try the exercises that I suggested, you felt what I felt, you felt that feel-good chemical when you laughed, even if you were faking it. That is the major point. Even if you fake it, it works anyway. It gives you a shot of feel-good chemicals and it makes you feel more resourceful. You are in a better way and a better state to embrace the challenges that are in front of you or face the situation that caused you to be stressed in the first place. Oxytocin is a very, very powerful chemical that will make you feel good, and it's also a social chemical, so if you actually laugh with others, even better!

The theme of this year's World Laughter Day is UNITY, because laughter does bring people together. It's even more powerful when you laugh with other people. Even if you only have two minutes before a meeting and you're really upset, go online and try to find a funny video on YouTube or something that will make you laugh. Have a list of funny jokes or funny events that happened in your life and use laughter as a way to make you feel better.

Nathalie uses laughter as a way to unite organizations.

Nathalie uses laughter as a way to unite organizations and instill confidence to improve workplace performance & thrive through change. 

Along the past two decades, Nathalie has inspired over 100,000 audience members internationally with her high-energy and dynamic presentation style. She is known for her use of metaphors, hilarious stories, and fun interactive segments.

Check out some of my previous blog posts...

5 Tips for Health & Safety At Work

5 Health-Boosting Beliefs

Why Are People Addicted to Their Phones

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