Laugh away your stress with stress relief laughter!

What is stress relief laughter? Stress is no laughing matter.

That is right. Stress is no laughing matter. After all, stress causes all kinds of problems when it is poorly managed. Prolonged and poorly managed stress makes us unhappy.

How is an unhappy person suppose to use laughter to relieve stress?

It has to do with a solution.

I divide stress relief solutions into two categories: rapid stress relief and real stress relief.

Rapid stress relief is about getting relief from the symptoms of stress quickly.

Real stress relief is about going beyond the symptoms. It addresses the challenges and obstacles that are the sources of your stress.

I am about to tell you something you can do to experience rapid stress relief. It is easy, costs nothing, does not require a prescription and is fun. It usually works immediately.

Laugh! That's right, simply laugh.

Laughter is nature's stress management tool. According to the book, The Laughing Cure, written by psychologist and comedian, Dr. Brian King, PhD, laughing is the physiological opposite of being stressed-out.

Stress causes many of your blood vessels to contract. Laughter causes your blood vessels to relax and expand allowing your cells to get more oxygen.

Stress causes the stress hormones, cortisol and epinephrine (adrenaline), to be released in your body. Laughter reduces cortisol and epinephrine production.

Stress makes it more difficult for you to think clearly and problem solve. Laughter helps you think clearly and problem solve better.

Laughter increases your stress tolerance and decreases how often you become stressed-out.

So to use stress relief laughter, you just have to laugh.

Stress relief laughter has other benefits as well.

According to Mayo Clinic's website, laughter also...

  • stimulates your heart, lungs, and muscles
  • increases the endorphins which are your body's feel good chemicals
  • relieves pain
  • helps your muscles relax
  • stimulates the circulation of your blood
  • stimulates the release of neuropeptides which improve immunity
  • reduces feelings of depression and anxiety
  • increases feelings of happiness
  • aids you in getting along with other people, which then increases social support
  • enhances your ability to cope well.

But how do I tap into stress relief laughter?

There are many ways to tap into humor and experience stress relief laughter.

One of my favorites is to go to the drug store - no, not to get a prescription for Xanax filled - and read funny greeting cards.

Then, before leaving the store, I stop by the magazines, purchase a copy of Reader's Digest, take it home and read the jokes. Reader's Digest has great jokes.

Other ways to tap into the benefits of laughter are...

  • tell a joke
  • watch funny TV shows
  • watch a funny movie
  • watch little kids play a sport (I love it when the batter in the T-ball game hits the ball and then runs to third base, followed by second base, next to first base and in for a "home-run.")
  • search for and watch funny videos on
  • listen to a comedian

...and many more.

What is your favorite way of tapping into and enjoying the benefits of stress relief humor?

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