7 Undeniable Reasons Laughter Is The Key To Happiness
Editors Note: This is a fantastic guest post by George Mortimer of Good Life Confidential.
Sounds like a dream, right?
Sure it’d be great to spend more time laughing. Everyone loves a good comedy and you could probably use a night out with your friends and their humor.
But between work, bills, and everything else going on, you’re too busy to fit anything else into your schedule. If you work hard now while you’re young, you’ll be able to laugh later when you have the perfect house and a happy family.
Until then, you must stay focused and dedicated to creating the ultimate reality for yourself.
Perhaps there’s another way.
Somewhere between adolescence and growing up we’re told you have to start taking life seriously if you want to become successful. The jokes and games are ending and soon you have to go out into the real world and start making money.
Yet when you look at the people who have a career to brag about and have achieved the big home and fancy car, most of them are miserable. Something’s missing.
Happiness isn’t about the money you make, it’s about the moments you create with those who mean the most to you. And there’s no trigger more powerful to creation than laughter.
If you’re still not sold on the importance of laughter here are seven more reasons laughing is the key to happiness.
1. Laughter Is Contagious
Humans are social creatures by instinct. You may love your time alone but Christopher McCandless from Into The Wild put it best when he said, “happiness is only real when shared.”
According to an article from Time.com, people are 30 times more likely to laugh around others than by themselves. In other words, laughter creates a wave of joy that radiates to everyone surrounding.
People enjoy good company. That’s when we’re most happy. One of the biggest reasons is because of the laughter we share between those we care about most.
2. Laughter Is A Drug
Drugs are defined as mind altering substances that change chemical balances in our brain. They stimulate certain chemicals like oxytocin and dopamine that make us feel good.
Laughter does exactly that. As nature’s drug, laughter stimulates those feel good ‘happy chemicals’. Unlike drugs however, laughter releases doses in amounts that the body can handle, never releasing enough to cause real harm.
Other than sore abs there’s no side effects from laughing. As a natural high you don’t have to worry about feeling down the next morning.
3. Laughter Keeps You Healthy
In the movie The Secret, Cathy Goodman shares her story with breast cancer and explains how she used laughter to help her believe she was already healed.
“One of the things I would do to heal myself is watch funny movies all day long. All I would do is laugh” she explained. In just three months, Cathy had gone from cancer patient to fully healed without a single treatment of chemotherapy or radiation.
Using only positive beliefs and laughter, Cathy Goodman literally cured herself of cancer.
Without our health, we’re nothing. Laughter works in a miraculous way that keeps our positive emotions flowing vibrant allowing our immune systems to fight off oncoming diseases.
4. Laughter Increases Productivity
At the same time laughter puts us in a positive state of mind it’s stirring our creative juices to strike inspiration. Except not in the way you’d think.
It’s not that you should laugh your way through the work you need to do, but stepping away for a few minutes to watch something that tickles your funny bone will allow you to step back into focus and finish the job.
Best selling author, James Altucher says that before every speech he watches stand up comedy not only be inspired but also to help him relax and prepare himself to perform.
Getting out of <i>serious mode</i> can help you look at things with a new perspective and there’s no better way to loosen your grip than a good laugh.
5. Laughter Makes You More Attractive
This article is about happiness not how to become more desirable to others but it’s unmistakably true that when you feel good, you look good.
Often times, even more than looks, what a person looks for most in another is a sense of humor. It’s been scientifically proven that a genuine smile can make you look more attractive.
A hearty laugh only adds to this effect. Not being afraid to laugh, or better yet the ability to make someone else laugh will cause them to become attracted (sexually or not) to you.
From your sense of humor, to their joy being around you, causes a ripple effect that thrusts happiness into you as well. All from a small moment of laughter.
6. Laughter Eliminates Stress
Arguably the most beneficial aspect of laughter is the powerful effect it has on reducing stress. Stress is the cause of the majority of all health related issues. Whether it’s physical, mental, or emotional, too much stress will tear you apart.
The same way laughter releases ‘happy chemicals’ in the brain, it plugs the flow of cortisol, the stress causing chemical, providing a temporary relief from our problems and worries.
It’s important to remember that laughter doesn’t make problems go away, they’ll still be there once the laughter wears off. Instead laughter provides an escape allowing you to step away from your problems for a moment and find something to smile about.
7. Laughter Creates Happiness In This Moment
You could be laughing about something that just happened, happened five years ago, or hasn’t happened yet and it doesn’t matter because right now, in this moment, you’re laughing.
Laughter triggers bursts of positive emotion which, according to Barbara Fredrickson in an article on The Science of Happiness Course, “literally change the boundaries of our minds and hearts and changes our outlook on our environment.”
If you can find joy and laughter in this moment, then it doesn’t matter how much money you don’t have or how bad things are, things will be okay. Because if you can find something to smile about, than right now things are good.
That’s why laughter is the key to happiness!
So basically laughter is a contagious drug that makes you: feel good, look good, more productive, reduces stress and brings joy all without the hangover tomorrow.
What more could you ask for from nature’s drug?
In the end it doesn’t matter how much money you made or how big your house was because none of it’s going with you. But the lives you touched with joy, laughter and passion, those moments will live on long after your gone.
Life doesn’t have to be as hard or complicated as it’s made out. You already have unlimited access to the tools you need to live a happy life.
Laugh more. Worry less.
Don’t take life so serious. Figure out the rest later.
That’s what happiness is all about.
George Mortimer is a passionate people watcher and world explorer inspiring others to live simply and stand for something greater than themselves. Download his two E-books here free.