Mary Poppins’ Uncle Albert Loves to Laugh and so do I. There have been many studies on the health benefits of both gratitude* and laughter. I love knowing that something I enjoy doing is actually good for me.
Jamey and I get to experience spontaneous laughter regularly because of our cats’ antics:
(Thanks go to Jamey for capturing the above picture of Johnny’s tail sticking out of her Ripple Rug.)
I also believe in Laughter Yoga. I don’t practice it daily as I do with gratitude, but it is a very useful tool for times when I need to “reset” myself because I am too deeply into “have to get things done” mode.
A number of folks that I follow on social media regularly post pictures, .gifs and videos that make me literally laugh out loud.
An example is this short cat video that I found on Google+. I have seen many cats drink water from a sink but this is the first time I have seen one who pulls his/her person’s finger over to drink from.
Then, of course, there are the wealth of clean humor videos on YouTube such as one of my long time favorites – Abbott and Costello’s Who’s on First routine. No matter how many times I watch it, I still find myself laughing at it each time.
Norman Cousins found that 10 minutes of belly laughter from watching funny videos (such as the Marx Brothers) would give him two hours of pain free sleep. I keep my own stock of favorite funny videos for very similar reasons. I believe that the old saying laughter is the best medicine is very, very true.
Today’s gratitude goes to those who make us laugh in any venue.
*Note: I like to read about scientific studies that show the benefits of gratitude. I recently read What Can the Brain Reveal about Gratitude? in the Greater Good Magazine published by the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkley. If you are interested in topics such as gratitude and happiness, you may wish to check them out.