Oh yes, the humourists have it right. Laughter IS good for you.
- increases your intake of oxygen-rich air
- speeds up your heart
- causes you to take deep breaths, so stimulates your lungs
- uses many muscles - ever laughed until your tummy hurt?
- increases the endorphins that are released from your brain - and that are responsible for the "feel good" after effect of a good laugh.
- soothes tension
- boosts your immune sytem
- relieves pain
So how do you get more of it? Different people are amused by different things. What works for me might not work for you. Here are some suggestions:
- Try reading amusing books
- Paging through comic books
- Listen to jokes on tapes or on the Internet (better set your PG ratings as high as you need)
- Invite over friends that make you laugh
- Play silly word games with your friends
- Tell your friend something silly that you did, and laugh at yourself while you talk
- Look for something funny in a serious situation or story
- Tell a really bad joke to a friend and get her to tell you one back. Keep swapping jokes, making an effort not to smile
- Play with kids and get caught up in their joyful spirit
- Play with a puppy or kitten
- Dress seriously, and put on crazy shoes, like funky sneakers or fluffy slippers, and go to town. Observe people's expressions and try to keep a straight face
You get the picture. Make an effort. Some people are naturally giggly. I suspect they won't read this article. If you need to work on your laughter skills . . . WORK ON YOUR LAUGHTER SKILLS. It really is an excellent medicine.