Laughter Helped Me Cope With Loss And Depression
Ariane: The first time I discovered Laughter Yoga / Laughter Exercise was in a vacation camp as an activity I selected because I enjoy laughter, comedy and jokes. As one of the many exercises, we were requested to laugh about a problem that affected us. As my father had passed away recently, I was carrying a lot of sadness and had not got over it. But I forced myself to laugh through tears. It was weird and definitely not funny. After a while laughter became natural. I felt it took the weight off my chest, easing my pain. It helped me accept and cope with my loss.
Recently, my husband left me after 30 years of trust and happy life. I sank in depression and suffered insomnia, chronic stress, panic attacks, shame, anger, feeling of injustice and worthlessness. Carrying on with basic life functions became an exhausting challenge. I tried medication, psychotherapy and meditation, all of which kept me afloat, but my brain was still shattered. I turned to Laughter Yoga, which once again helped me overcome my stress and trauma. With a new lease of life, I trained as a laughter teacher in order to bring more happiness into other people’s lives. Laughter always helped me create friendly connections while travelling and language barriers were magically erased by laughing.
Practicing Laughter Yoga or Laughter Exercise every day for at least 20 minutes has not only made me feel joyful; it has also increased my efficiency and self-confidence. Though a natural laugher, in childhood, I was constantly chided by parents and teachers to stop laughing for no reason. Now, I want to create Laughter Clubs, which are safe havens for people to laugh their hearts out and shed all inhibitions.