It's the time of year when life gets just a little busier. Holiday travels, guests and celebrations are tons of fun but can sometimes get a just a little stressful. We girls are responsible for planning, shopping , cooking and cleaning and the question is "HOW DO I MANAGE IT ALL?" While an extra slice of pizza or a cocktail initially sound good, the answer is really simpler than that.
A cheerful disposition is good for your health; gloom and doom leave you bone-tired. Proverbs 17:22
Laughter is one of the greatest ways to combat stress and its benefits are great. Here are a few:
- Laughter reduces the level of stress hormones and increases health-enhancing hormones. This ultimately results in a stronger immune system.
- Because muscles contract when we laugh, they are relaxed after a good belly laugh.
- Laughter provides an emotional release.
- In a tense situation between people, laughter can restore an environment of camaraderie.
Some easy ways to bring laughter into your day are:
- Try a joke at the breakfast table. Click here for clean jokes.
- Shift your paradigm. If someone says or does something that gets under your skin, pretend you're watching the scene from the outside. It might bring on a chuckle.
- If you watch TV before bed, try a comedy instead of a crime drama. The brain works while we sleep. Give it something positive to mull over.
- Watch the company you keep. Stay away from Negative Nellies. It's easier to pull someone down that to pull someone up.
- Tickle your loved ones. Whether you're the tickler or the ticklee, laughter will fill the air.
I also want to share one of my favorite ways to keep stress at bay. It's a dialogue I call Gee, Thanks. When I feel stressed, I find a private place like a sofa, bathroom stall or closet and begin to say random things I'm thankful for. A couple of weeks ago my husband walked in while I was on the couch ( with my eyes closed) speaking outloud.
Lord, thank you that I don't have to have a root canal this week. Thanks for the new nail polish. I want you to know how appreciative I am that my Chi isn't broken and for the pint of Ben and Jerry's, Cherries Garcia in the freezer.
He laughed at my random list and within seconds we were both laughing and all my stress was gone.