I’m not a huge fan of online or text slang and will usually cringe at the sight of LOL (call me old fashioned). But, that aside, what’s behind the popular acronym is something really special. Laughing is both heart-warming and nourishing for the body, mind and soul.
Laughter is a physical activity which creates rhythmical contractions of the diaphragm and other parts of our respiratory systems. That’s a lot of good vibrations spreading throughout our bodies. And there are countless articles and studies verifying the powerful impact of laughter on our health. It’s not only a way to relieve physical tension and stress, it’s known to boost our immune system and release endorphins. These days you can even go to ‘Laughter Yoga’ if you want to take your merriment seriously.
Laughter comes easier with others. A good show or funny article may get you chuckling but a decent belly laugh usually comes from being with others. Do you have friends and family who are guaranteed to tickle your funny bone? Make time to see them and give yourself the space and freedom to relax, hang out and giggle. Surround yourself with people and situations that are bound to elicit hearty laughter. It’s a great way to bond with others and strengthen relationships. Some activities are more likely to get the funny juices flowing so book yourself a night out to see a comedian, go bowling, dancing or anything that works for you.
Laugh at yourself
Take the photo in this article as inspiration – a group of women seeing a photo of themselves for the first time. Make a point of laughing at yourself by doing something new or silly. Or tell someone a story of something funny or embarrassing you did. The point isn’t to belittle yourself, instead laugh at the situation. It’s a great coping mechanism and will help put things in perspective.
Children – natural gigglers
If you’re still struggling to laugh – hang out with children. They are the best at playing, being silly and laughing all day and you will quickly find it to be infectious. Release your inhibitions and explore the world around you, taking delight in what you see. Only yesterday I was playing hide and seek with my children and within minutes we were all in a fit of giggles. At one point I walked into the bedroom looking for my son and there he was, perched dramatically on the mantelpiece, pretending to be an artwork. I burst out laughing at his attempt to be inconspicuous. He laughed too and then simply said, ‘Mum, did you just LOL?’ Knowing I was already halfway through this article I looked at him in surprise, then smiled and replied, ‘Yes, I did.’
And at that point I realised something. Perhaps the overuse of a simple acronym or abuse of the English language could be forgiven in this case – especially if the result is more people laughing and sharing happy moments.
So take the first step today. Start your day with a smile – it’s the gateway to laughter. Imagine what a million smiles could do if they turned into a million people laughing.
About the author: Marina Barbaro is somewhat of a gypsy writer – roaming between projects and enjoying a spirited approach to the written word. Most recently she joined the team from a million smiles, where she will be sharing her extensive experiences travelling and living amongst different cultures. See more of her amazing work by following amillionsmilesmovie.com
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