12 Months of Wellness | Month 11 Gratitude & Laughter
We all want to be happy. What’s the simplest way to a happier life? Gratitude and laughter. With Thanksgiving right around the corner we’re sharing the amazing health benefits of laughing and expressing your gratitude and encourage you to work them into your daily routine.
Gratitude and laughter are great allies in making you happier and improving your overall mental and physical health. Aside from being fun, both have stress reducing effects and are some of the simplest and effective ways to improve your mood.
Expressing your gratitude isn’t just about counting your blessings. There are many positive health benefits that include reducing stress and changing your brain chemistry to make you happier. People who express their gratitude regularly are much happier than those who keep it to themselves. The simple act of expressing your appreciation creates new pathways in your brain and produces serotonin and dopamine, two chemicals that are responsible for making you happier.
Laughter has similar mental and physiological effects. Laughing releases endorphins in your brain making you feel peaceful, calm and euphoric. The short-term effect of laughter can increase circulation and make you feel much more relaxed. Over the long-term, these positive benefits can strengthen your immune system and increase your ability to deal with stressful situations.
Here are a few suggestions for adding more gratitude and laughter to your daily life:
- Start a gratitude journal and write three things you’re grateful for every morning and every night. This can be as simple as “I’m thankful for the sunshine”. Allow whatever comes up each day and don’t over think it.
- Use your social media accounts to share what you’re grateful for and inspire others. Do this consistently and invite others to do the same.
- Express your gratitude for the people in your life on a regular basis through email, in person or, to make it extra special, through snail mail.
- Surround yourself with people who make you laugh.
- Make someone laugh everyday.
Here are my intentions for the month to keep me healthy all season:
Laughter and gratitude really are the best medicine because they not only calm the mind, they heal the body as well. What will you do to add more happiness to your life? Download this month’s Intention Setting Guide to get started.