I invite everyone to follow the path of Joy. Have a sparkle in your eyes, a spring in your step and a ready smile to flash at everyone who comes into contact with you. You can enjoy sustainable happiness and experience the silver lining in every cloud. It is really very simple to achieve, and there are many ways to develop your Spirit of Joy every day.
Over the six years I have been practicing Laughter Yoga, on my own and with others I have discovered many varied and simple ways to include laughter, smiling and positive focus into my daily life. I know from teaching Laughter Yoga, that a lot of people feel it is ok to laugh with the group at Laughter Club or in a class. However, they are often short of ideas as to how to include it into their everyday activities.
Just for fun and for your delight, I have put together a whole day’s worth of laughing activities and ideas to help develop your Spirit of Joy. Try some or all and see what happens….
- On waking – breathe easily and deeply and smile. Think of one thing you are grateful for today and smile. Think of one person you love today and breathe for them. And smile.
- Have a wonderfully long stretch in bed and yawn. Then practice a few mindful breaths, filling your body with oxygen and smile.
- Jump out of bed and do a couple of Expressive Breaths – take a deep breath in, hold it, hold it, hold it and bend over slowly exhaling expressively, allowing your body to relax.
- Jump in the shower and sing & laugh as you shower. Practice your laughter scales as you shower.
- Dry yourself and give your body a good shake and wriggle, let go of any tension and feel the energy in your body begin to wake up.
- Practice the Ho, Ho, Ha, Ha Calcutta laughter – by now your body is tingling with energy!
- Look at yourself in the mirror and pull a funny face and laugh. Take a deep breath in, hold the breath, till you are about to burst – then burst out laughing!
- Do the Getting To Nose You Laughter to yourself in the mirror – left hand on your heart and right pointer finger to your nose in the mirror and laugh!
- As you stand in front of the mirror….Breathe in, and open your arms wide. Hold it, hold it, hold it, and breathe out and give yourself a Laughter Self Hug, then Excessively Love Yourself with lots of kisses.
- Have a swig of your Energy Elixir. As you swallow, feel it warm your body as it moves down to your toes, then as it goes back up your body and bursts out of the top of your head. It makes you want to wriggle, jiggle and giggle with delight!
- Smile and be friendly, giving a cheery comment to everyone you have breakfast with.
- Whilst going to work – laugh every time you wait at traffic lights or are caught in a traffic jam or the bus stops, or the train stops. Every time you move off shout out “Very good! Very good! Yey!” Don’t worry you can say this silently in your head, or out loud. Remember, your brain knows no difference if you are laughing or saying something positive, just to yourself or to others. You will still be in a state of Joy!
- Just before entering work have a quick – “Ho, Ho, Ha, Ha!” energy boost.
- Throughout the day, try different modes of traveling in work – walking, skipping, running, dancing your way around your workplace.
- Smile and be friendly to all your workmates.
- Do the Appreciation Laughter – thumbs up, nodding and laughing - to everyone you meet.
- If you face tricky challenges in your work day, practice Humming to calm yourself.
- If you have a foggy moment and need to clear your mind get your Mental Floss out and clear out your brain.
- If you need a bit of courage, suck on your Courage Gobstopper.
- Practice random acts of kindness throughout the day.
- Feeling a bit down? Take out your Happy Pills and share some with work colleagues or friends.
- Got a problem you are having difficulty solving, practice talking to yourself and working it out in Gibberish, the answer will come to you in a flash!
- Feeling a bit achy from sitting at the computer for too long? Make yourself some Laughter Cream and rub it into the achy bits. Why not share some with your work colleagues or friends, just for fun?
- Celebrate the end of your working day with a good deep breath in as you stretch one arm up into the air, then give yourself a pat on the back and laugh! Repeat with the other arm.
- On the way home in between laughing every time your transport stops, appreciate yourself and your day and say –“I feel great because…..” I did well today because ….”
- Once at home greet those you love with warm Heart to Heart hugs, smiles and words of appreciation.
- Ring a friend and laugh with them.
- Socialize and do something you enjoy and laugh.
- Encourage someone else to do something they would like to do and laugh with them.
- Watch a funny or uplifting movie.
- Put on some favorite music and dance.
- Write in your gratitude journal all the wonderful things that happened to you today and that you are grateful for.
- Do something unexpected for a loved one.
- Listen to a piece of music you enjoy.
- Soak in a tub and soothe away the tensions of the day and blow bubbles.
- Take every opportunity to celebrate events, people or special times with those you care about.
- Create Love Hearts in the air and blow lots of love into them. Then, blow them away to someone or someplace that needs your love today.
- After brushing your teeth practice Ha-ha, Ha-ha, Ha, ha, Ha, ha! in the mirror and smile at your gleaming teeth.
- Smile at yourself in the mirror and state – “I have done well today. I am happy, healthy and strong!” Then stretch your arms up, taking in a good deep breath. Hold it for a few seconds and laugh as you exhale. Take one last look at your wonderful self and say ”Goodnight, sleeptight! I love you!” and smile as you get into bed.
As Laughter Yogis, it is important that we remember to maintain a positive joyful state in our language, physiology and focus. It is through our example that others are inspired to laugh with us. And, one of the most wonderful things about being a Laughter Yogi, is that I know if I practice all the little everyday actions of smiling and laughing with gratitude, my Inner Spirit of Joy expands and has no limits on how it can touch others. Very good! Very good! Yey!!
Now it is your turn, take a few minutes and write down as many ways you can become sustainably happy and boost your Inner Spirit of Joy on a daily basis.