When was the last time you made a mistake, dropped something, or forgot where you put your keys and instead of admonishing yourself, you laughed? I try to do it as much as possible, and lately I’ve had lots of practice!
I learned many years ago that instead of treating every mini accident as a crisis worthy of anger, that if instead I saw it as an opportunity to lighten up and laugh it off, that my mood improved, and I was able to bounce back from the incident much quicker. I know, it can be tempting to get fixated on the issue and put on the victim hat when things don’t go your way, but all that does is make things worse.
The reality is that life is messy. It brings us plenty of obstacles and over the past two years, an abundance of twists and turns, making it nearly impossible to predict what’s going to happen next. For many, the anxiety is too much, and they turn to substances or other unhealthy coping measures. But if we could all just learn to let go and lighten up a bit, our worries would also feel lighter. Just like Richard Carlson suggests in his best-selling book – “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff…and it’s all Small Stuff. “
Love that book!
You see bringing light to a problem helps to lessen its darkness. So by adopting a more light-hearted perspective towards life’s daily foibles, in time you can become more adaptable and resilient. But like everything in life, it’s a choice.
So if you’re a more serious-minded person who finds it difficult to laugh, I have a couple of activities that might help strengthen your lighthearted muscle so that you can, as the Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it, to be: “free from care, anxiety, or seriousness, happy-go-lucky, easygoing, cheerfully optimistic and hopeful.”
Sounds good to me.
Here’s something you can do each morning before you even get out of bed.
First smile – really big. Then drop your shoulders. Relax your jaw. Breathe deeply and slowly. Then smile really big again. And before you step out of bed, remind yourself that today is a do-over and that you are flexible enough to adapt to any situation that comes your way. And if appropriate, you will laugh at yourself out loud, whether anyone is watching or not!
Once your lighthearted muscle has grown a bit more, here’s another exercise you can do that’s from Chapter 37 of my book Being Joy™. It’s bound to shift your energy and lighten your heart!
Do or wear something out of the ordinary today. Something that is totally ridiculous and will make you laugh out loud. If you are in a situation where you can’t publicly look silly, then wear some silly underwear or something that only you will know about. Silent smiles are good until you get home and then let it all hang out! And that my friend is joyful living!
Love and laughter from your Joy Mama,
P.S. Want more joy and laughter in your life? If you don’t already have a copy of my book, you can purchase a copy for yourself or to give one to a friend or family member who might be struggling right now. You’ll be helping to spread the important message of joyful living with someone who needs some light in their life.
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Image from Pixabay.