Laughter, Happiness and Wellbeing

“Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face.”  Victor Hugo

Whilst I was on a chilly and packed train to London today, I saw an interesting article in “The Metro” about laughter and what our sense of humour says about us.  (If you want to read the full article please see the link at the bottom of this post.)

This article included that:

“Robin Dunbar, professor of evolutionary psychology at the University of Oxford, has carried out a number of studies into laughter.

He said laughter helps release endorphins in the body which act as a natural painkiller, but only the genuine, unforced kind of uncontrollable laughter which comes with real amusement – not the forced kind of polite titter which we make when pretending to find one of our colleagues’ jokes funny. Laughter also builds up our immune systems.

Perhaps it’s not the best medicine, but it is an effective one.”

I remember many occasions when laughter, and seeing the funny side, has helped me deal with a difficult situation.  The article also says that:

  • We are 30 times more likely to laugh while watching something in a group, than alone;
  • Laughter can boost the immune system by up to 40%;
  • Babies laugh about 300 times a day, and adults laugh about 20 times a day.

As the article says, and I agree, a sense of humour is individual.

What one person finds funny, with another person, it will not raise a titter!  However, I think many of us can think of someone who is good fun, and time spent with them is a tonic.

Perhaps this weekend, everyone can think about how they can include more laughter in their life?


Laughter, Happiness and Wellbeing — 4 Comments

  1. I know, from working with Julia, that laughter is a brilliant way of breaking down boundaries and fears. I have seen people attend her classes full of terror at being out from their homes. By the end they were looking forward to the next week and sharing in the warming atmosphere of laughter.

  2. I know I feel better not only when I’m laughing, but also just when I’m smiling. I smile a lot when I’m walking my dogs, looking at something beautiful, or thinking about a great time I had. How can I find out about your happiness programmes – are they open to anyone?

  3. Hi Donna, thank you for your thoughts. I think smiling is contagious. Pick a day and smile at as many people as possible, and see what happens!
    I am currently developing happiness programmes which will be open to everyone. Watch this space. I will email you directly with further information. Julia