The Health Benefits of Wellbeing Laughter and The Rivest Method of Joyful Living
These two health and wellness practices help participants receive a variety of health benefits by using real, authentic laughter, humor-based laughter, and intentional laughter. Wellbeing Laughter and The Rivest Method of Joyful Living also include elements of mindfulness, meditation, breathing exercises, tai-chi, qigong, pranayama, yoga, mime/dance, and guided relaxation. You will see some similarities to Robert Rivest’s list of 10 Health Benefits of Laughter. There is a powerful mind-body-health synergy with the laughter component of Wellbeing Laughter and The Rivest Method of Joyful Living.
Breathing Exercises, Breath-Work, and Pranayama
Tai Chi, Qigong and Yoga
Mime, Dance, and Improvisation
Many of the health benefits in the practices of Wellbeing Laughter and The Rivest Method of Joyful Living overlap and complement each other.
Robert Rivest can put together the right combination of these practices for your session, group, or event.
Lifts Your Mood: Laughter releases chemicals that make us feel good. (See DOSE below). When we feel good, we can do just about anything a little easier. Laughter helps us have a positive mindset. It can help us diffuse anger and conflict allowing us to see the humor in life. A good laugh can help us put our problems into perspective. Laughter is a great, quick pick-me-up. It’s also good for us over the long term.
Laughter Releases DOSE! D.O.S.E. is the acronym for all the major “Happy” chemicals in our brains. These chemicals are Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin, and Endorphins. The release of these chemicals makes us feel happy, motivated, significant, and connected, while at the same time, reducing pain, stress, and anxiety. Hope you have a good dose of laughter today.
Boosts the Immune System: Much of the dis-ease in the world today is caused or made worse by stress. Laughter reduces our primary stress hormones by increasing our intake of oxygen and stimulating our circulation. What’s more, laughter increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies (like T and B lymphocytes) improving our resistance to disease, bacteria, and viruses.
Decreases Stress: We produce serotonin when we laugh. That helps reduce stress hormones like cortisol, which build up when we experience sustained stress over time. Laughter stimulates circulation, reduces inflammation, and aids in muscle relaxation, which helps relieve the physical symptoms of stress. Laughter can ‘switch on’ the calming effects of our parasympathetic nervous system. It regulates our stress response, heart rate, and blood pressure, giving us a relaxed feeling when we finish laughing.
Improves Creativity & Productivity: Laughter can instantly relieve our body's stress response, soothing any tensions we are holding. It can help us be more creative and productive by improving our overall emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing. Laughter can lessen brain fog and enhance our problem-solving skills. A deep belly laugh can help our brain focus and concentrate, allowing us to stay on task. Laughter connects us and helps us feel more emotionally safe. Taking a healthy laughter break during the day can free our minds, helping us to see our situation from a new angle. This, and the ‘surprise’ component of laughter, gives our brain a boost in creativity, allowing us to think (and laugh) outside the box.
Increases Oxygen Levels: Laughing alone, or with others, can provide a great workout for our pulmonary, respiratory, and cardiovascular systems. Laughter makes our lungs work harder in a good way. When we laugh, our diaphragm, chest, and abdominal muscles tighten. This forces stale air out as we exhale, allowing fresh air to go deeper into our lungs when we inhale. Laughter expands the tiny air sacs in our lungs, giving us an expanded area for oxygen exchange. The increase in oxygen levels that laughter provides is similar to prolonged meditation and deep breathing exercises found in mindfulness practices.
Regulates Blood Pressure: Laughter is aerobic. When done enthusiastically, laughter is equivalent to other aerobic exercises. Laughing stimulates our muscles, heart, and lungs, and can even lower inflammation. This helps reduce the risk of cardiovascular problems such as strokes and heart attacks. Laughter works our muscles and stimulates several organs. The increased amount of oxygen entering our circulation dilates our blood vessels. Our blood flow rises and blood pressure increases a little, then drops down to baseline when we stop. A daily laughter practice lasting 15-20 minutes is good for the health of your heart and overall circulation.
Manages Pain: Laughter relaxes the muscles and helps the body to produce natural painkillers called endorphins. Endorphins promote an overall sense of ease and wellbeing. They essentially turn off our pain by blocking the nerve cells that receive the pain signals. Endorphins can also help us relieve moodiness and symptoms of anxiety and depression. Plus, laughing is fun. It gives us a positive mindset that can distract us in a good, joyful way.
Reduces Depression and Anxiety: Laughter practices are gaining popularity as a noninvasive and non-pharmacological alternative or additional treatment for anxiety, stress, and depression. When we have a good laugh, it reduces muscular tension and overall stress. Laughter can lower anxiety and irritation, which contribute to feelings of melancholy, sadness, or depression. In addition to releasing D.O.S.E, laughter helps bring us into the present moment. Laughter is a pleasurable, enjoyable way to bring us back to the here and now.
Brings Us Together: Laughter is a universal activity that fosters closeness in a group, contributes to group bonding, and helps us build trusting relationships. Humans use different types of laughter as social clues. We can even use laughter to negotiate a better way to live and work together. When strangers, friends, family members, and coworkers unite in laughter, they feel more connected and more at ease with one another. The release of feel-good chemicals like endorphins, allows us to open and share more with others. Having a good belly laugh with another person, or in a group, is an uplifting form of non-verbal communication that can create euphoric states. Laughing with others is a positive, memorable, shared experience of happiness and joy.