Thursday, November 29, 2012


“Every Promise is a Gift in Advance.”

It’s called the biology of hope.  It’s good for your health to have something positive to look forward to.

In the world of laughter research, studies find that simply anticipating that you will be laughing triggers the immune system boost in your body.  Even before you begin to laugh.  Simply knowing that you will is enough for your body’s chemistry to activate.

Be sure to have gifts in life to look forward to.

Photo:  Stock.xchnge

Monday, November 26, 2012

John Cleese

“I’m struck by how laughter connects you with people.  It’s almost impossible to maintain any kind of distance or any sense of social hierarchy when you’re just howling with laughter.  Laughter is a force for democracy.”  John Cleese

Photo:  Cleese with the Muppets/Wikimedia

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Give Thanks to Yourself

Much is said about gratitude this time of year.  Giving thanks fosters more joy in life.  It can’t be denied.  The more you are grateful, the more joy grows inside.

But consider this:  give thanks to yourself as well.

After many years of practicing gratitude daily, it occurred to me to begin to thank myself for all I had done for others and the world. It’s a great truth that you are no doubt a gift to others.  I shared this idea with a friend who is a mother.  She loved it for mothers give so much of themselves.  It’s easy for their cup to run dry.

It was such a new concept at first I only did it occasionally – gave thanks to myself for what I had done for others that day, small and large things, thoughts, gestures, wisdom, or even just a smile; often little things that gave others a bit of brightness to their day.  But eventually, after breaking through that barrier of awkwardness and self-consciousness at honoring myself, I made it a regular part of my daily gratitude ritual.

We are gifts to the world.  We are gifts to each other.  It’s important to recognize it.

Photo:  Stock.xchnge

Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Whale Wins

 “Laughter is brightest when food is best.”

It’s an Irish proverb written on the floor of my local health food supermarket.  And I watched it happen the other night at dinner.

The Whale Wins is the oddly named restaurant that just opened in my neighborhood and it’s got amazing culinary delights.  My foodie friend and gourmand Maurice joined me there for dinner recently.  I sat across the table from him and watched his reaction as he took his first sip of the parsnip soup.  Even I wasn’t expecting it to elicit a burst of prolonged laughter – it was that good!

We ended up spending way too much, eating way too much - but it was a seriously happy meal.

I know this isn’t a food blog but really, The Whale Wins is a total win, with truly exceptional edible creations.  It might even bring you to laughter.

Friday, November 16, 2012


“If you laugh a lot, when you get older your wrinkles will be in all the right places.”

Photo:  Stock.xchnge

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Joy Kills Sorrow

I saw a band Friday night called Joy Kills Sorrow at The Fremont Abbey.  Aside from having such a great name, and being a cast of amazingly accomplished musicians, the lead singer, this lovely young woman, at one point breaks into laughter with the guitar player and can’t keep singing.  My kind of people.  The embodiment of joy!

She apologized for cracking up in the middle of a song, but of course we all loved it!   

Music and laughter – no more powerful combination of joy!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

An Excuse to Laugh

I had a friend who used to send me funny little messages that I loved because they made me laugh.  But in person he was quite different, quiet, understated, subdued.  Much more like the person I knew to be working on his PhD thesis.  But then the next day, another funny message.

It’s gotten me thinking how some people just need an excuse to lighten up.

My ex used to love to come to the laughter club.  He was often one of the few men who attended.  Yet he fit right in and more importantly he could easily assess how it benefitted him.  Yet if you knew him, you’d be surprised that he took to Laughter Yoga so easily, for he doesn’t easily laugh in life. He has even been called dower.

I’ve seen this over and over, the quiet ones come and find a place and an excuse to loosen up and laugh.

At one of the retirement communities where I bring laughter yoga, there used to be an old man named Jim.  He was very quiet and subdued, yet during the laughter sessions he had a wonderful loud and boisterous laugh like he was having the time of his life. I was amazed when the activity director told me this was the only time she heard him laugh.

Photo:  Stock.xchnge

Monday, November 5, 2012

Oprah endorses Laughter Yoga

Oprah says “Laughter yoga combines laughter with yoga breathing exercises.  It is a perfect way to laugh and get exercise at the same time.  It approaches laughter as a body exercise so it’s easy to laugh even if you’re depressed or in a bad mood.  I’ve tried it and it works.”

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Laughter and Creativity

Which comes first the chicken or the egg?

Laughing wakes up creativity – which makes the comedian funny – which makes them laugh more – which makes them funnier…

Openness = flowing ideas.  Laughter stimulates both hemispheres of the brain simultaneously.  Students who laugh before taking exams exhibit more creativity.  Laughter abolishes inhibition which equals more creativity flowing…

Let go, relax, laugh and be creative!

Photo:  Stock.xchnge