One of the best ways to keep smiling in life (even after, or through, times of sadness or pain) is to find humor in situations where joy and/or peace may be harder to recognize…or by just laughing for the sake of laughing itself.
If you ever listen to yourself ruminate or worry about almost anything, you will recognize that there is always an opportunity to get a good laugh at yourself in any situation, even when it may seem impossible to do so in the moment.
You can be angry and laugh anyway, be sad and laugh, be confused or anxious and laugh through it.
Sometimes listening to the thoughts in your head with neutral non-attachment in the moment (or saying them out loud in a safe space and listening to yourself that way) will provide the humor that you need to burst into laugher.
But, if you are having a hard time finding the joke that gets you to switch on a different set of chemical in your brain (different from the stress-related ones that you may be generating at any given moment), you can simply just make a conscious choice to watch or listen to some lighthearted comedy for chuckles, or just do some simple Laughing Yoga.
How To Do Some Quick and Simple Laughing Yoga
- Sit comfortably in a cross-legged position on the floor, on a chair, or upright in your bed.
- Take several deep breaths before breathing normally and naturally.
- Start with a clapping rhymical chant to the sounds “Ho, ho, ha-ha-ha.” Do this for 1-2 minutes.
- Take 2-5 minutes to just speak in gibberish, making nonsense sounds that have no meaning. An easy way to do this is to pretend to speak in a nonexistent foreign language (that not even you know), but as if your were fluent in it.
- Start laughing in either a “ho-ho-ho,” “ha-ha-ha,” “hee-hee-hee,” or “huh-huh-huh” fashion. You can also take turns laughing with each style to see what suits you best.
- Spend about 3-5 minutes laughing before sitting quietly in silence and observing your mind, being, and body.
Some versions of Laughing Yoga involve physical movement. Feel free to incorporate this into your practice as well. You can either freestyle dance while laughing, or do a synchronized dance to your rhythmic “ho-ho-ho,” “ha-ha-ha,” “hee-hee-hee,” or “huh-huh-huh.”
Laughter is free medicine for your mind, body, and spirit. It can also help you to put some of your stressful thoughts and worries to rest. So be sure that you take at least 30 minutes of each day to laugh.
When you laugh at yourself, or at the insanity of a situation or the world, you begin to exercise resilience and mind-mastery that can create the peace of mind that you need to go deeper into meditation that prepares you for Samadhi.
Thank you for reading.
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