Tips for Your Daily Dose of Laughter
What is a doll’s favorite food? Barbie-que!
What did the pickle say to the cucumber? I’m kind of a big “dill” around here!
These are cheesy “dad jokes,” but there’s nothing like the delight that comes from a pithy play on words or a story that gets you roaring.
An old adage says that laughter is the best medicine, but humor is particularly important during this time of year when the days are short, the air is cold and the news is grim. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 64% of people report being affected by post-holiday depression.
After the whirlwind of the holidays, it makes sense that January can be a let-down for many. The party’s over, and you have to go back to work. That’s why we at The Village at Woods Edge encourage everyone to seek out joy and good cheer this month, and there’s no better way to do that than through comedy.
The Stress Relief of Laughter
Another adage says that you are what you eat, but there ought to be an adage that says you are what you consume. Everyone from Norman Vincent Peale and his “power of positive thinking” to contemporary neuroscientists measuring chemical reactions in your brain agrees: If you surround yourself with negativity, your mind produces a neurochemical reaction that can induce stress, depression, and generally lower your sense of satisfaction with life.
Not only can laughter lighten this mental load, research shows that it actually induces physical changes in your body. These changes have been clinically proven to strengthen your immune system, among other benefits. By watching a funny movie, having a delightful lunch with a friend, and surrounding yourself with good news, you stimulate endorphins—A.K.A. the feel-good chemical in your brain. In the short run, these endorphins can lower stress and soothe tension. Over the long run, laughter and positivity help make sure your body has the energy it needs to combat diseases.
3 Tips for Laughter
At The Village Woods Edge, we try to maintain a joyful community, full of vibrant activities that promote human connection and good cheer. Here are four tips for A good laugh and a positive start to your year:
1. Try laughter yoga. We promise we didn’t make this up. Laughter yoga is a group exercise session where you start with some body movements to warm up, and then you do a series of voluntary laughs. If laughter yoga is too goofy, regular yoga has great mental and physical benefits, and classes are available for residents at our local YMCA. Read more about laughter yoga here and consider giving it a try!
2. Connect with friends for a good laugh. What did the chicken call her video game machine? An eggs-box! What do you get when you cross a dog with a tulip? A collie-flower! You don’t have to be “pun-stoppable” to share a good laugh with a friend. A friendly coffee or lunch date can keep your spirits high all year long, so be sure to connect with others regularly.
3. Surround yourself with positivity. One of the primary reasons older adults choose to move into an independent living community is for the social connections. Laughter is contagious, and a friendly community inspires positivity—laughter, joy and smiles all around.
From The Village at Woods Edge, we wish everyone a happy—funny, punny—new year. To learn more about our community, contact us any time to schedule a tour.