Laughter Yoga Alone for You
There is no one way of doing this. Each person is different; it is important that you pick and choose the laughter exercises you relate to and work with what works best for you.
This helps to set a positive frame of mind, builds motivation and hope. Dr Lee Berk states that positive brain chemicals are produced in the body the moment one starts to think about laughter or in our case, think about our laughter club. This helps the person to open up to laugher.
Pre and Post Assessment:
Take a few deep breaths before starting Laughter Yoga exercises, in order to assess:
1. How deep is your breath?
2. How easily you breathe or how free is the flow of air into your lungs?
You will notice that breathing is much slower and deeper after the exercises and breath flows in more easily and freely.
Do not judge the quality of your laughter. You are working with exercise form of laughing/laughter yoga, allowing the inner child to be liberated to have fun and working with the inner spirit in order to get the full benefit of laugher for health and happiness.
Open Your Mouth Wider:
Don’t keep your jaws tight. Each time you do laughter exercises, open your mouth a bit wider to enable laughter from the belly. If your mouth is closed tight laughter will come from the throat or upper chest and that is not what we want.
Enjoy Your Laughter:
Laughter should not be forceful or mechanical. Take pleasure in the feelings of joy with each laughter exercise and enjoy the motion of laughter which brings about the physiological changes of happiness and joy.
Wear loose and comfortable clothes for breathing and laughter exercises. Clothes you wear should not obstruct abdominal movements or tighten around the chest.
Ideally one should spend 10 to 15 minutes for laughter exercises and yogic breathing, with short breaks of relaxation and stretching. Begin with 10 minutes and gradually increase the duration.
Laughter Yoga alone should be ideally practiced in the morning as it will carry the cheerful mood and good feelings right through the day. If you don’t feel like laughing early in the morning, begin with some warming up and breathing exercises with gentle giggles. This will help to charge the body and soon facilitate laughter. You can also do it at anytime of the day to boost your energy levels.
Note: give a gap of two hours after meals before you start the exercises.
40 Day Formula:
If you repeat any activity with willingness and full commitment for 40 days it will become a new habit. The brain develops new circuits and the act will become a part of your subconscious mind. This is also said about 21 day practise. The choice is yours.
Warming Up Exercises
Ho Ho Ha Ha Exercise:
Ideally, this warming up exercise should be done in a standing position. Say ho ho twice as you push your hands with palm facing out forward away from your chest and say ha ha as you push with palms facing downwards. Slowly sway you entire body gently from left to right, bend your knees slightly as you speed up saying ho ho ha ha and repeat about 5 times or more according to you needs.
In between, take two deep breaths by raising your arms up and holding your breath for 3-5 seconds and exhale with a prolonged haaaaaaaaaaaaa in a crescendo and bend your body over from your hips down hanging loosely with your arms down. And repeat two or three times.
Choose a few exercises about 2 or 3:
One Meter Laughter is a good one to stretch yourself and laugh, very popular and ideally suited to Laughter Yoga Alone as it gives a total feeling of release and joy
Alooo Ha Laughter is very stimulating and provides for better circulation as body movements facilitate an improved supply of blood to the brain.
Silent Laughter works well with beginners if you find it hard to laugh without a reason. It is a great technique when you want to laugh all by yourself and do not want to disturb anyone around you.
Humming laughter is good for the same purpose.
Mindful Yogic Breathing: The deep breathing in-between should be more mindful in Laughing Yoga Alone. If you slow down your breathing process deliberately from 12/15 times a minute to 8/10 times a minute, the entire physiology slows down. Blood pressure, heart rate and the entire metabolic process balances itself.
What better way to start the day. In mindful breathing, your mind regulates the breathing. You are able to feel the air you breathe reaching each and every part of your body. You become fully aware of the way you breathe and become more conscious of the movement of your diaphragm.
Mindful breathing can be done sitting or standing. Keep your spine straight and breathe normally a few times. While inhaling, take a slow deep breath and imagine your body inflating like a balloon. Feel the air filling up gradually from toes upwards to the head. While exhaling, imagine the balloon deflating and feel the air going out in the reverse-from head t toes.
Finish with a Very Good Very Good Yeah and belief that you are going to have a wonderful day.
Applications of Laughter Yoga Alone
Laughing Alone When the Mind Is In Turmoil:
When upset, angry, filled with negative thoughts sending negative bio chemicals through your body and needing emotional release/catharsis. Calcutta Laugh with Ho Ho Ha Ha hand movement is a good way to release and relax.
Laughing Along In the Bathroom:
The bathroom provides for privacy and safety. You can laugh as much as you like and have no fear of anyone watching or hearing you. Showing laughter, brushing your teeth laughter, towelling dry laughter, applying laughter cream on your face and body laughter are all good laughs in the Bathroom.
Walking and Laughing:
Many people combine laughter exercises with their walks. Laugh out loud and experience the feel of freedom or start with a smile and slowly add giggles and chuckles and hearty laughs while walking. Wave and smile at passer-by’s. Don’t forget to stop to smell and smile the roses along the way.
Laughing In Your Car:
Traffic jams, and snarl ups have become a part of one’s daily routine leading to stress, tremendous road tension and adverse mental attitudes. Laughter Yoga in the car is a good way to change negative energy to positive energy. Force a smile when you are caught in a traffic jam and pretend that you are sending laughter good cheers & positive vibes to all caught in the jam. A lion laugh is a good one to try.
Laugh At Yourself with a Ho Ho Ha Ha Ha Mantra, no clapping if driving and great if you are walking or doing it at home.
Laughing With Household Chores:
Laughter Yoga teaches you to laugh at practically anything and everything that changes negative energy to positive energy. People can laugh by themselves at home while doing repetitive household chores like washing dishes, mopping floor, vacuum cleaning, hanging clothes, cleaning windows and many others otherwise mundane chores. This is not a loud laughter but a gentle giggle which will ease your perspective towards mundane chores and will make them less daunting.
Cell Phone Laughter/Mobile Phone Laughter:
Use a cell phone/mobile phone or a hand gesture of a mobile phone and imagine getting a hilarious joke over the phone and crack up laughing. Keep laughing and no one will know what you are up to. It will help you recharge and feel refreshed and get the happy chemicals circulating.
Telephone Laughter Buddy:
It’s common practice among laughter club members, all over the world, to share a laugh with someone over the phone/zoom/skype on a fixed day or time which is mutually convenient. In case you are unable to go to a laughter club everyday, this is an innovative way of practicing laughter exercises and reaping all the benefits of laughter. When there is lack of motivation and one does not feel like laughing alone, to have someone on the phone makes the process interesting and inspiring.
All the Best and Lots of Laughs
Mahes Karuppiah-Quillen N.D.
Laughter Yoga Trainer, Laughter Leader, Laughter Therapist
Global Laughter Yoga Ambassador
President Laughter Clubs Victoria
M: 0431 166 002