Here is an interesting article on Laughter Lawyers, an innovative concept, created by Jackie Curran, ex- lawyer and now one of Australia’s foremost leaders on laughter. She trains lawyers around the world to laugh and lighten up as the profession is extremely stressful.
Speaking at a recently held, ‘Laugh, Breathe, Relax’ workshop, in Sydney Jackie told attendees about how she left a high-stress career in the law to become a Laughter Yoga instructor. Laughter is a powerful tool for dissolving stress, which will improve the experience of being a lawyer, she said.
While Curran admitted that “laughter isn’t the answer to everything”, she believes lawyers can enjoy a happier working life through Laughter Yoga. “We can transform how we feel and how we deal with life,” she said. “Laughter is a way to switch off from work and clients ... we take on a lot of responsibility and anything we can do to lift that off for a while is a good thing.”
Referring to her own experience of Laughter Yoga, she added that: “Laughter changed my emotional state ... so that I found myself getting back to a place of happiness much faster than I used to when I was a serious lawyer.”
The workshop saw the female-dominated group engage in a number of laughing exercises, including speaking in gibberish. Curran suggested the nonsensical dialogue is “how we sound to clients when we’re giving legal advice”, which prompted an outburst of laughter.
“Laughter is a natural anti-depressant,” she said. “It also has physical benefits as it relaxes muscles, which can relieve pain.” Curran also pointed out that 100 laughs are the equivalent of a 10-minute workout on a rowing machine.
When asked whether more women attend her workshops than men, Curran said it depends on the forum. “Most of the time it’s more women but, interestingly, at sessions I’ve done at law conferences, men outnumbered women.”