Is Laughing Good For You? (7 Surprising Benefits)

A girl is laughing with her hand on her face

Laughter is often the universal sign of happiness. It is used to bring people together all over the world. It is also an important part of emotional self-care. That must mean laughing is good for you, right?

Research has shown that laughter has many positive and healthy benefits. It helps to reduce stress, boost our immune system, and can even relieve our pain. When we laugh, our bodies release endorphins which are natural painkillers. Endorphins also increase our feelings of well-being and happiness.

However, sometimes laughter can be difficult to come by, especially if we are currently experiencing burnout, overwhelm, or are in survival mode.

Luckily there are things we can do to make sure that we include laughter as a part of our emotional self-care routine.

What are the benefits of laughter?

1) Can reduce our stress response

A good laugh session can help to reduce the stress response that may be happening in our bodies. It decreases cortisol and and adrenaline, which are stress hormones.

Laughter also has the ability to increase and then decrease our heart rate and blood pressure which can leave us feeling relaxed.

2) It can relieve pain

Laughing releases endorphins from our brain which can act as our body’s own natural painkillers.

3) It stimulates our organs

When we laugh, we naturally take in more oxygen which stimulates our lungs, heart, and muscles.

4) It can improve our immune system

Negative thoughts and negative self-talk are not good for us. Negativity can cause more stress on our body, and that stress decreases our immunity.

However, positive thoughts and self-talk release neuropeptides into our system that help to fight stress and other illnesses.

5) It decreases tension in our bodies

Laughing can stimulate the circulation of blood in our bodies. This reduces many of the physical symptoms of stress that we can experience and helps our bodies and minds to relax.

6) It improves our mood

When we laugh, we often feel happier as a result. This can help to decrease any sadness, stress, or anxiety we might have been feeling at the time.

7) It improves our relationships

Laughing with someone is a great way to form a deeper connection with someone, which helps to improve our mental health and overall happiness.

But why is laughter good for self-care?

Laughing makes us feel good. This good feeling helps to to remain more positive, and it tends to stick around even after we stop laughing.

It really is good for our mental and emotional health, which in turns makes it an important part of our self-care.

How to laugh more?

So if we would like more laughter and happiness in our lives how can we accomplish this?

1) Increase your self-care

When we take better care of ourselves, we are less likely to experience stress, burnout, and exhaustion. A quality self-care routine will give us more energy and make it easier to laugh.

2) Surround yourself with humor

What we surround ourselves with in our daily lives influences us more than we may realize. If our goal is to laugh then posting funny jokes around our room or in our office, watching funny TikTok’s, or listening to funny podcasts can all help.

3) Find funny people

When I really am needing a laugh I always try to spend time around my Uncle Gary. He is literally one of the funniest people I know. Without even trying he always has everyone around him in tears from laughing so hard.

If you have anyone like that in your life, they are a treasure and you should try to spend as much time around them as you can.

4) Have fun during your breaks

Scheduling small breaks throughout our day can actually make us more productive and help us to achieve our goals. But if we also use those small breaks to consume something with humor, such as funny videos, reading funny quotes, or telling jokes with a loved one, we will be able to increase the amount of laughter we experience in a day.

5) Do more of the things that make you laugh

This one seems pretty straight forward and obvious (and it is), but if we take time to reflect on the last time we laughed really hard at something and then just make an effort to make that happen more often we will be increasing our laughter.

6) Try not to take everything so seriously

While I understand that you may be going through a hard time, maybe you are stressed or burned out or struggling (I get it I’ve been there), that doesn’t mean you need to be unhappy all of the time. It is okay to laugh at ourselves sometimes when we do or say something silly or funny.

Even in embarrassing moments that I’ve had, looking back at them now I wish I would have just had the ability to laugh at myself instead of being so embarrassed and taking everything so seriously. It could have been a funny moment.

7) Journal about it

Many people know all about the benefits of journaling and include it as a part of their daily self-care routine. But did you know you could use it as a tool to increase your laughter?

I’ve written about journaling for gratitude before, but you can also do the same when it comes to humor. Try writing down anything funny or silly that happens and makes you laugh throughout the day and you will be able to find opportunities in your life for you to find more laughter.

Even reading back journal entries about previous funny things can make you laugh.

Whatever the reason is for your laughter, I don’t think there is any debate that it is good for us and that figuring out how to laugh more is a great addition to any self-care routine.

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