Laughter and the ability to remain light-hearted have been proven in many studies to be more successful at maintaining a healthy heart than mere diet and exercise. Why? Perhaps because maintaining a sense of humor frees us from stress and anxiety. After all, you can’t be anxious about something and laughing at yourself at the same time.
Here, then, are 5 ways to develop a more light-hearted attitude toward life.
- Smile. The physical act of smiling releases endorphins into your body and instantly improves your mood, making it easier to laugh at whatever situation has come along. Try it. If you don’t believe me, try this; Smile as big and wide as you can, and try to maintain a negative thought. I’ll bet you can’t do it! Go ahead; laugh at how simple this is!
- Laugh at yourself. We’re all human. And so are you! (Some people need to be reminded of that.) Taking yourself too seriously puts undue pressure on your subconscious mind and keeps you further from whatever it is you’re trying to accomplish. I’m guilty of this at times and I suppose everyone is. Your most important relationship is the one you have with you. Learn to forgive yourself and laugh at your mistakes, even the clumsiest of them.
- Practice this mantra: “This too shall pass.” Isn’t that true? You know that you can overcome any adversity. Consider all the challenges you’ve already faced and have lived to tell about it. Whatever the situation is, you’ll get past it. Take a deep breath, say, “this too shall pass,” and face the crisis head-on.
- Keep busy. Remember, your thoughts control your feelings. Og Mandino wrote, “Never will I labor to be happy; rather I will remain too busy to be sad.” Engage your mind with positive thoughts and when you feel yourself veering to the negative, find something to do. Perhaps this is why gardeners tend to be very happy people; there’s always something to do when you have a garden.
- Make someone else smile. The best way to create something for yourself is to give it to someone else first. Tell a joke to a friend. Tell a stranger she looks nice. Surprise your spouse with a gift of some sort.
Finally, strengthen your sense of humor by conditioning your mind to look for the bright side of every situation you encounter each day. Before long, this will be your usual way of thinking, and happiness and success will be just around the corner.
We will talk more about the importance of developing a sense of humor at my Life Skills Retreat; I hope to see you there!
In the meantime, here are a couple of tools to help you get on the path to lasting peace and happiness:
Until next time,
This post was written by Debra Moorhead, Motivation, Education, Inspiration on April 21, 2008