Did you know that there are many health and psychological benefits of smiling, laughter and a good sense of humour?
We are greatly influenced by the expression we hold on our faces – smiling actually uses less muscle and energy than frowning, so it really does make much more sense to smile. By smiling you are actually kidding your brain into thinking you are happy and this has the knock on effect of telling the rest of your body ‘hey everything is ok!’.
Smiling is an effective, free way to boost your mood and lead a much healthier life…
REASON 1 – REDUCE STRESS & ANXIETY
Studies have shown that smiling reduces stress and anxiety – even when you smile for no reason, the health benefits are fabulous, it lowers your heart rate, calms frayed nerves and slows down the breath because it relaxes the throat and upper chest muscles.
REASON 2 – BOOST IMMUNITY
The smiley face muscles send signals to the brain to release endorphins making us feel good. This in turn helps to make your immune system stronger because the body produces more white blood cells when it is relaxed and happy.
REASON 3 – BE MORE APPROACHABLE
Smiling makes us look more approachable, attractive and inspires confidence. Research has shown that people who smile more often make better leaders and are surrounded by more happy people. This is largely due to the fact that smiling is highly contagious – just one person smiling can actually lead to a chain reaction – which in turn leads to less stress and anxiety and all of the above benefits.
REASON 4 – FEEL POSITIVE
Having a good sense of humour helps to create a realistic balance in our lives – it means we can laugh at our mistakes and not take ourselves or our lives too seriously. When we get too serious we can get bogged down and feel morose which will lead only to negative thoughts, worry and stress.
REASON 5 – EXERCISE THE DIAPHRAGM
The action of a good belly laugh is excellent exercise for the diaphragm, it means that the muscle of the diaphragm gets a good work out – both tensing and relaxing which in turn is great for the lungs. Laughter yoga and laughter therapy stem from the teachings of the Buddha, it is not only good for the physical self but also for our minds in understanding that our lives are a small part something much, much greater.