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We often build resilience in hard times.

And we draw on it in times like these.

So, it seems counter-intuitive that such a situation should be met with humour rather than a suitably serious response.

But it’s true. Scientists have proven that a great way to overcome stress is with laughter – no joke!

Laughter positively influences wellbeing. It helps build resilience and decreases stress.

Serious science

Laughter activates neuro-messaging in the brain and triggers the release of mood-enhancing neurotransmitters like serotonin (the happy neurotransmitter). It also reduces cortisol (the stress hormone).

And get this. Research shows laughter influences physiological, cognitive and emotional responses in an authentic way, even if the laughter is fake! So, if your Dad’s joke bombs, give yourself the benefits of a forced laugh while you’re giving him the satisfaction.

In times like these everyone would benefit from more laughter in their lives.

Take a minute to think of the things that make you laugh and make those moments happen more often. Laugh as hard and as often as possible.

Throw on a funny movie, call a friend who always has a story to tell, or try laughing yoga (do yourself a favour and watch Guru Yogi Ramesh in the video). It will lift your spirits, reduce your stress and boost your energy.

Guru Yogi Ramesh demonstrates Laughing Yoga. Now it’s your turn!

The best thing about laughter – it’s free!

While laughter isn’t a miracle cure for every ailment, the science says a laugh a day may keep the doctor away.

David Buttifant is a high-performance coach, founder and facilitator of Resilience Builders.

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