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The Power of Laughter

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As 2018 comes to an end, people start to reflect and review their score card. Where they seem to have achieved so little, there is the tendency to be sad, however, as the saying goes; “where there’s life, there’s hope”. A cure to the situation is to be grateful for the successes achieved and find a humor punch for the rest. Laughter they say is the best medicine.

What is Laughter?

“Laughter is a smile that engages the entire body. At first, the corners of the mouth turn up slightly, then the muscles around your eyes engage and we can see a twinkling in the eyes. Next you begin to make noises, ranging from controlled snickers, escaped chortles, and spontaneous giggles, to ridiculous cackles, noisy hoots, and uproarious guffaws. Your chest and abdominal muscles become activated. As the noises get louder, you begin to bend your body back and forth, sometimes slapping your knees, stomping your feet on the floor or perhaps elbowing another person nearby. As laughter reaches its peak, tears flow freely. All of this continues until you feel so weak and exhausted that you must sit down or fall down”. (Holistic Nursing (pg. 313) By Barbara Montgomery Dossey & Lynn Keegan)

Benefits of Laughing

  • Restores balance and equilibrium
  • Helps to discharge surplus tension and mental excitation
  • Helps to boost productivity
  • Laughter is like having stationary jogging
  • A laugh a day keeps the doctor away
  • Laughter can have profound effects on organic illness, including incurable malignancies
  • Laughter releases the inner healing quality to restore you naturally.
  • Laughter fortifies us against depression, heart disease and heightens our resistance to pain.

Strategies for Laughter

  • Choose to live a God centered life
  • Choose to be thankful
  • Choose to be happy
  • Choose to practice forgiveness
  • Choose to love other people
  • Choose to do something meaningful
  • Choose to be hopeful and optimistic
  • Choose to make a difference
  • Develop a sense of humor

Quotes About Laughter

  • Laughter is the best medicine (Readers Digest)
  • A good laugh heals a lot of hurts. — Madeleine L’Engle
  • A good laugh is a mighty good thing, a rather too scarce a good thing. — Herman Melville
  • A good laugh is sunshine in the house. — William Thackeray
  • A smile is a curve that sets everything straight. — Phyllis Diller
  • A smile starts on the lips, a grin spreads to the eyes, a chuckle comes from the belly; but a good laugh bursts forth from the soul, overflows, and bubbles all around. — Carolyn Birmingham
  • A well-balanced person is one who finds both sides of an issue laughable. — Herbert Procknow
  • Against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand. — Mark Twain
  • Always laugh when you can. It is cheap medicine. — Lord Byron
  • Among those whom I like or admire, I can find no common denominator, but among those whom I love, I can: all of them make me laugh. — W. H. Auden
  • An optimist laughs to forget; a pessimist forgets to laugh. — Tom Nansbury
  • And keep a sense of humor. It doesn’t mean you have to tell jokes. If you can’t think of anything else, when you’re my age, take off your clothes and walk in front of a mirror. I guarantee you’ll get a laugh. — Art Linkletter
  • As soap is to the body, so laughter is to the soul. — A Jewish Proverb
  • At the height of laughter, the universe is flung into a kaleidoscope of new possibilities. — Jean Houston
  • He who laughs, lasts! — Mary Pettibone Poole
  • Humor is a prelude to faith and laughter is the beginning of prayer. — Reinhold Niebuhr.
  • I have not seen anyone dying of laughter, but I know millions who are dying because they are not laughing. – Dr. Madan Kataria.
  • If Laughter cannot solve your problems, it will definitely DISSOLVE your problems; so that you can think clearly what to do about them – Dr. Madan Kataria.
  • If you don’t learn to laugh at trouble, you won’t have anything to laugh at when you’re old. — Edgar Watson Howe.
  • If you have no tragedy, you have no comedy. Crying and laughing are the same emotion. If you laugh too hard, you cry. And vice versa. — Sid Caesar.
  • If you wish to glimpse inside a human soul and get to know the man, don’t bother analyzing his ways of being silent, of talking, of weeping, or seeing how much he is moved by noble ideas; you’ll get better results if you just watch him laugh. If he laughs well, he’s a good man…All I claim to know is that laughter is the most reliable gauge of human nature. — Feodor Dostoyevsky.
  • If you would not be laughed at, be the first to laugh at yourself. — Benjamin Franklin.
  • Laughter has no foreign accent. — Paul Lowney.
  • Laughter serves as a blocking agent. Like a bulletproof vest, it may help protect you against the ravages of negative emotions that can assault you in disease. — Norman Cousins.
  • Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Continue to learn. Play with abandon. Choose with no regret. Laugh! Do what you love. Love as if this is all there is. — Mary Anne Radmacher-Hershey
  • Of all days, the day on which one has not laughed is the one most surely wasted. — Sebastien Roch
  • On average, an infant laughs nearly two hundred times a day; an adult, only twelve. Maybe they are laughing so much because they are looking at us. To be able to preserve joyousness of heart and yet to be concerned in thought: in this way we can determine good fortune and misfortune on earth and bring to perfection everything on earth. — I Ching.
  • The greatest prayer you could ever pray is to laugh every day. — Ramtha.
  • The old man laughed loud and joyously, shook up the details of his anatomy from head to foot, and ended by saying that such a laugh was money in a man’s pocket, because it cut down the doctor’s bills like everything. — “Tom Sawyer” by Mark Twain.
  • The person who can bring the spirit of laughter into a room is indeed blessed. — Bennett Cerf.
  • The person who has a sense of humor is not just more relaxed in the face of a potentially stressful situation but is more flexible in his approach. — John Morreall.
  • The truth is, laughter always sounds more perfect than weeping. Laughter flows in a violent riff and is effortlessly melodic. Weeping is often fought, choked, half strangled, or surrendered to with humiliation. — Anne Rice, Taltos.
  • To truly laugh, you must be able to take your pain and play with it. — Charlie Chaplin.
  • Total absence of humor renders life impossible. — Colette
  • Trouble knocked at the door, but, hearing laughter, hurried away. ― Benjamin Franklin
  • We don’t laugh because we’re happy, we are happy because we laugh. — William James.
  • We women take love too seriously. Men wish to be loved with laughter, not with sighing. So, laugh, sweetheart, laugh, or soon you may be weeping. — Minna Thomas Antrim.
  • When humor goes, there goes civilization. — Erma Bombeck.
  • When you do laugh, open your mouth wide enough for the noise to get out without squealing, throw your head back as though you were going to be shaved, hold on to your false hair with both hands and then laugh till your soul gets thoroughly rested. — Josh Billings.
  • You don’t stop laughing because you grow old. You grow old because you stop laughing. — Michael Pritchard.
  • You grow up the day you have your first real laugh — at yourself. — Ethel Barrymore.
  • Your body cannot heal without play. Your mind cannot heal without laughter. Your soul cannot heal without joy. — Catherine Rippenger Fenwick

References

https://www.laughteronlineuniversity.com/120-quotes-laughter-throughout-history/

http://www.helpguide.org/articles/emotional-health/laughter-is-the-best-medicine.htm

http://life.gaiam.com/article/7-benefits-laughter

 

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