Category Archives: Sebastien Gendry’s Laughter Yoga Blog

TLP #4: Tips For Laughter Pros

Friday, 01/14/2010

Public Speaking

Introduction tip
When someone is going to introduce you, help them and yourself by giving them a short paragraph of what to say. Print it in a large font with spaces between each line, on heavy-grade paper. But remember to ask them not to start by saying, “Our speaker has asked me to read this”…!

Q&A tip
Q&A sessions tend to end with a lame, “Well, if no one has any more questions…”. It is a better idea to encourage people to ask questions during the session, and/or to come see you after the session.

Good Business Practices

Free Press Release Distribution Service is great to send out press releases and articles and it doesn’t cost anything. Submissions quickly show up on Google.

Online Courses
Take and build online courses on any subject:

Of Interest In The News This Week

Technology Corner

Video Making Tip
You can learn the basics of how to make good promotional videos for free at

Track Flight Status
Here is a useful website to help you track flight status:

Sources: Google Alerts

Control Of Your Emotions Is Key To Health And Happiness

Below is an article written by the Indian mystic Paramahansa Yogananda in the 1930s that that encourages us to better manage our emotions because that is the key to health and happiness.

– – –

[Yoga] is a comprehensive system, a method to bring the individual into complete and balanced harmony with the great plan of the universe. There are many forces at work seeking to destroy this balance, to produce disease, fear, poverty, failure, and unhappiness. These forces attack the individual to upset his physical, mental, and spiritual balance. The great secret of mastering these forces was known for ages by the great Hindu saints, and it enabled them to live far beyond the usual term of life in perfect youthfulness of body and mind, and in perfect spiritual harmony.

There are only two ways to travel in life: one leads to happiness and the other to sorrow. There is no mystery about life; it is very simple in spite of its apparent complexities. You should look at life unmasked, in the mirror of your experiences. View time and space as they come to you in the form of problems, experiences, and relations. Look at the perpetual current of emotions and thoughts that arise within you. Go into the heart of your aspirations, dreams, hopes, and despairs. Dive deep into the mute cravings of your inner self. Life is manifesting itself through all these channels and demanding that you seek understanding with your highest intelligence, wisdom, love, and vision.

Sorrow has no being of its own. It has no objective existence, but arises rather in the subjective nature of the sufferer. Constantly you affirm sorrow, therefore it exists. Deny it in your mind and it will exist no longer. This assertion of the Self is what I call the hero in man. It is his divine o r essential nature. In order to acquire freedom from sorrow, man must assert his heroic self in all his daily activities. Sorrow is not necessary for the progressive march of life, although the birth of joy seemingly comes out of pain.

In our relative existence it is evident that the conditions and circumstances surrounding life are conducive either to sorrow or to happiness, as if in their very nature they were either desirable or undesirable. The root of sorrow lies in the dearth of heroism and courage in the character of the average man. When the heroic element is lacking in the mental makeup of a person, his mind becomes susceptible to the threat of all passing sorrows. Mental conquest brings happiness into life, but sorrow arises out of mental defeat. As long as the conqueror in man is awake, no sorrow can cast its shadow over the threshold of his heart.


Tears and sighs on the battlefield of life are the liquid cowardice of weak minds. Those who give up the fight become prisoners within the walls of their own ignorance. Life is worth nothing if it is not a continuous overcoming of problems. Each problem that waits for a solution at your hand is a religious duty imposed upon you by life itself. Any escape from problems, physical or mental, is an escape from life, as there can be no life that is not full of problems. Essentially, conditions are neither good nor bad; they are always neutral, seeming to be either depressing or encouraging because of the sad or bright attitude of the mind of the individual concerned with them.

When a person mentally sinks below the level of circumstances, he surrenders himself to the influence of bad times, ill luck, and sorrow. If he rises above circumstances by the heroic courage that is in him, all conditions of life, however dark and threatening, will be like a blanket of mist that will disappear with the warm glance of the sun. The sorrows of the ordinary person do not arise out of the conditions of life; they are not inherent in the conditions. They are born out of the weaknesses and infirmities of the human mind and the effects of human experiences. Awaken the victor in yourself, arouse the sleeping hero in yourself, and lo! No sorrow will ever again overwhelm you.

Ignorant people, like some animals, do not heed the lessons that accompany pain and pleasure. Most people live a life checkered with sadness and sorrow. They do not avoid the actions that lead to suffering, and do not follow the ways that lead to happiness. Then there are people who are over-sensitive to sorrow and happiness. Such persons are usually extremely crushed by sorrow and overwhelmed by joy, thus losing their mental balance. There are very few people who, even after burning their fingers in the fire of ignorance, learn to avoid misery-making acts. People wish to be happy, and yet most of them never make the effort to adopt the course of action that leads to happiness. Lacking imagination, they keep rolling down the hill of life, only mentally wishing to climb the peak of happiness, until something terrible happens to arouse them from their nightmare of folly. Usually it is only then, if their enthusiasm for happiness survives the crash to the bottom of unhappiness, that they wake up.


Anger defeats the very purpose for which it is aroused. Anger is not an antidote for anger. A strong wrath may cause another to suppress his weaker wrath, but it will never kill that weaker wrath. When you are angry, say nothing. Knowing it is a disease, like the coming of a cold, break it up by mental warm baths consisting of thinking of those with whom you can never be angry, no matter how they behave. If your emotion is too violent, take a cold shower, or put a piece of ice on the medulla oblongata (back of your head, at the base) and the temples just above the ears, and on the forehead, especially between the eyebrows, and on the top of the head.

Anger gives birth to jealousy, hatred, spite, revengefulness, destructive instinct, wild ideas, brain paralysis, and temporary insanity–any of which may lead to horrible crimes. It is poison to peace and calmness. It is poison to understanding. Anger is a manner of misunderstanding. To conquer others by anger is the method of fools, for anger only rouses more wrath in the enemy and thus makes him a stronger and more powerful opponent. A righteous demonstration of anger to avert evil without causing harm is sometimes productive of good. Blind, uncontrolled anger is revengeful, spiteful; it only increases the evil that you wish to destroy. Be indifferent to those who seem to enjoy making you angry.

When anger comes, set your machinery of calmness in motion to manufacture the antidotes of peace, love, and forgiveness which banish anger. Think of love, and reflect that even as you do not want others to be angry with you, neither do you wish others to feel your ugly anger. When you become Christ-like and look upon all humanity as little brothers hurting one another (“for they know not what they do”), you cannot feel angry with anyone. Ignorance is the mother of all anger.

Develop metaphysical reason and destroy anger. Look upon the anger-arousing agent as a child of God; think of him as a little five-year-old baby brother who perhaps has unwittingly stabbed you. You should not feel a desire to stab this little brother in return. Mentally destroy anger by saying: “I will not poison my peace with anger; I will not disturb my habitual joy-giving calmness with wrath.”


Secret fear creates tension and anxiety, and brings ultimate collapse. We must have faith in our ability, and hope in the triumph of a righteous cause. If we do not possess these qualities, we must create them in our own minds through concentration. This can be accomplished by determined and long -continued practice. Fortunately, we can start practicing any time and any place, concentrating upon developing those good qualities in which we are defective. If we are lacking in will power, let us concentrate upon that, and through conscious effort we shall be able to create strong will power in ourselves. If we want to relieve ourselves of fear, we should meditate upon courage, and in due time we shall be freed from the bondage of fear. Through concentration and meditation we make ourselves powerful. This new power enables us to focus our attention upon one point at a time, and continual practice for an extended period will enable us to concentrate our energy upon a single problem or a single responsibility without any effort. It will become second nature to us. Possessed with this new quality, we shall succeed in our life’s undertakings, whether spiritual or material.

As soon as the soldiers of wrong thoughts rally to attack your inner peace, it is time to wake up the soul soldiers of light, honesty, self-control, and desire for good things, and to wage furious battle. It rests with you whether you want greed, sense slavery, anger, hatred, revengefulness, worries, or inharmonies to rule your life, or whether you will let the divine soldiers of self-control, calmness, love, forgiveness, peace, and harmony govern your mental kingdom. Drive away those rebel sense habits that have brought misery to the empire of your peace. Be king over yourself, letting the soldiers of goodness and good habits rule the kingdom of your mind. Then happiness will reign within you forever.

You must possess courage, faith, and hope. Courage is needed to fight against dreaded fear. We have said before that fear destroys life. There are many people who will not even attempt to work because they are desperately afraid of not succeeding. They feel that they are not competent enough to do the work, and thus meet failure even before starting. The Bhagavad Gita describes how Arjuna, at first overwhelmed with fear of losing courage on the battlefield, braces up and performs his sacred duty.

Always know that every day is a fresh opportunity on the part of the human ego to perform more and more exploits of heroism. Meet everybody and every circumstance on the battlefield of life with the courage of a hero and the smile of a conqueror. Whatever comes your way and needs attention must be considered as a duty. Duty is not imposed upon man by some superior power. It is the inherent urge of life toward progression; therefore, duty is action that needs care. Neglect of duty is a source of evil that can be avoided by wisdom.


Avoid associating with those who are always complaining about life. They may ruin your newly awakened spirituality, which is like a tender plant growing within you. Avoid such people and try to be always happy, no matter how you are situated. God will never reveal Himself to you unless you are contented and happy. You must saturate everything with the thought of God. Realize that all that exists is centered in God.

Be silent and calm every night for at least half an hour, preferably much longer, before you retire, and again in the morning before starting the day’s activity. This will produce an undaunted, unbreakable inner habit of happiness that will make you able to meet all the trying situations of the everyday battle of life. With that unchangeable happiness within, go about seeking to fulfill the demands of your daily needs. Seek happiness more and more in your mind, and less and less in the desire to acquire things. Be so happy in your mind that nothing that comes can possibly make you unhappy. Then you can get along without things that you have been accustomed to. Be happy because you know that you have acquired the power not to be negative, and because you know, too, that you can acquire at will whatever you need, and that you will never again become so material-minded that you will forget your inner happiness, even though you should become a millionaire.


Unselfishness draws everybody, including one’s own self, into the circle of brotherhood. It brings many harvests — return service from others, self-expansion, divine sympathy, lasting happiness, and Self-realization.

Feeling the sorrows of others in order to help free them from further suffering, seeking happiness in the joy of others, and constantly trying to satisfy the needs of bigger and bigger groups of people, is what you might call being “sacredly selfish. ” The man of sacred selfishness counts all his earthly losses as deliberately brought about by himself for the good of others, and for his own great and ultimate gain. He lives to love his brethren, for he knows that they are all the children of the One God. His entire selfishness is sacred for whenever he thinks, not of the small body and mind of ordinary understanding, but of the needs of all bodies and minds within the range of his acquaintance or influence, his self then becomes one with the Self of all. He becomes the mind and feelings of all creatures. So when he does anything for himself, he can only do that which is good for all. He who considers himself as one whose body and limbs consist of all humanity and all creatures, he is the one who certainly finds the universal, all-pervading Spirit in himself.

TLP #3: Tips For Laughter Pros

Friday, 01/07/2010

Public Speaking

Mid-day evaluation tip
Consider handing out a short evaluation form before lunch during your day long or 2 day workshops. Many people are reluctant to give negative feedback in front of others, but may do so anonymously. This way every member of your audience has a chance to provide feedback that you can review during the lunch break. You could use a scale of Excellent-Very Good-Good-Fair-Disappointing that requires a simple check mark, and then list the topics with a scale of 1-5 for the number simply to be circled. The most important sections are open-ended: “I wish less time spent on…” and “I would like to learn more about…”

Webinar Plan B
A webinar Plan B for PowerPoint-only sessions is to upload the slides to with a secret link for the attendees. During the session, you can tell them when to click to the next slide and which slide number they should be on. Use that with your free teleseminar number, and you’re good to go.

Good Business Practices

Using Google Trends to help secure engagements
Used Google Trends ( to help quantify regional interest in a particular topic. Next step is to go there an offer a workshop!

Holiday gifts that last
Trying to think of a unique and memorable end-of-year thank-you gift for a valued client or business associate? Tired of sending the same old over-packaged gift basket or ubiquitous gift card? Consider writing and mailing a “love letter.” That’s a card or letter of admiration, gratitude, and/or shared memories. In your own words and by your own hand, it lets the person you value know just why and how much he/she is so appreciated. The cost is minimal, but the effect — on you and the recipient — can be enormous. Handwritten messages are the gifts that live the longest on window sills, desk tops, and bulletin boards. Later they’re kept in treasure boxes or albums, to be reviewed again and again and passed on for others to read, sometimes for generations. The sentiments remind you of why you so like to work with this person. At the same time, they can deepen relationships and keep you top-of-mind the next time there’s a contract opportunity or a referral to be made.

Technology Corner

Must-read site for writers
Whether you write blog posts, newsletters, white papers, or ebooks, Copyblogger ( is definitive location for new ideas and age-old reminders about the art of writing for web reader consumption.

Computer utilities I love

  • Keepass – a free open source password manager, which helps you to manage your passwords in a secure way.
  • Free Commander — an easy-to-use alternative to Windows Explorer which allows you to see two windows full of files side by side, search more easily than Explorer, and more.


Laughter Yoga Relevant Books & DVDs

Here is a list of books & DVDs you will find informative and very educational.

Aging and General Brain Health

  • (book) The Brain that Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science. For years the doctrine of neuroscientists has been that the brain is a machine: break a part and you lose that function permanently. But more and more evidence is turning up to show that the brain can rewire itself, even in the face of catastrophic trauma: essentially, the functions of the brain can be strengthened just like a weak muscle.
  • (book) The Mind and the Brain: Neuroplasticity and the Power of Mental Force. Schwartz, a UCLA psychiatrist and expert on treating patients with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), teams up with Begley, a Wall Street Journal science columnist, to explore the mind/brain dichotomy and to discuss the science behind new treatments being developed for a host of brain dysfunctions.
  • (book) Brain Fitness Robert Goldman holds a Ph.D. in steroid biochemistry, founded the National Academy of Sports Medicine, and is an adviser to the Journal of Longevity Research. In Brain Fitness, he makes a valid point that’s been proven by recent studies: your brainpower, like the muscles of your body, can be expanded through exercise. And with the life expectancy of humans nearly doubling in the past century, he says, paying attention to your cognitive skills and taking steps to ward off Alzheimer’s is becoming more and more vital.
  • (book) Keep Your Brain Alive: 83 Neurobic Exercises. Keep Your Brain Alive presents the first brain exercise program scientifically based on the adult brain’s ability to produce its own natural brain food. Developed by a leading neurological research scientist and the author of “60 Ways to Relieve Stress in 60 Seconds,” the program offers 83 simple “neurobic” exercises designed to fight off the effects of mental aging by helping to prevent memory loss and increase mental fitness.
  • (book) Making Rounds with Oscar: The Extraordinary Gift of an Ordinary Cat. Dosa, a geriatrician with a strong aversion to cats, tells the endearing story of Oscar the cat, the aloof resident at a nursing home who only spends time with people who are about to die. Despite hearing numerous stories about Oscar’s uncanny ability to predict when a patient’s time is nearing, Dosa, ever the scientist, remains skeptical. Slowly, he starts to concede that there may be something special about Oscar. Dosa starts to pay more attention to the cat’s decidedly odd behavior, noticing that Oscar seeks out the dying, snuggles with the patient and family members until the patient passes; with others, he smells the patient’s feet, sits outside a closed door until admitted, or refuses to leave a dying patient’s bed. Dosa discovers how powerfully Oscar’s mere presence reassures frightened or grieving family. Ultimately, the good doctor realizes that it doesn’t matter where Oscar’s gift comes from; it’s the comfort he brings that’s important. This touching and engaging book is a must-read for more than just cat lovers; anyone who enjoys a well-written and compelling story will find much to admire in its unlikely hero.
  • (book) Reversing Memory Loss: Proven Methods for Regaining, Stengthening, and Preserving Your Memory, Featuring the Latest Research and Treaments. Written with warmth and clarity, this book belongs in the hands of anyone who has agonized over an aging friend or relative or worries about his own capacity to remember. No physical problem is as destructive or frightening as the loss of memory. Stress, pain, depression, overmedication, stroke, or Alzheimer’s disease — these are just some of the causes. In this fully revised and updated book, an internationally known neurosurgeon and researcher at Massachusetts General Hospital outlines the latest treatments that help reverse memory loss: New forms of memory recently discovered by researchers, new tests to evaluate memory capacity, new research on the effects of prescription medications, including widely used antidepressants, and brain “poisons”, new research on the important role of nutrition and exercise in promoting memory, advances in early diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer’s, and promising new research on the regeneration of damaged brain cells.

Emotional Intelligence

  • (book) A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future (includes a full chapter on Laughter Yoga!) With visionary flare, Pink argues that business and everyday life will soon be dominated by right-brain thinkers. He identifies the roots and implications of transitioning from a society dominated by left-brain thinkers into something entirely different—although at times, he seems to be exhorting rather than observing the trend. As a narrator, Pink delivers in a well executed manner, with occasional hints of enthusiasm. He maintains a steady voice that is well suited for a business-oriented text, and his crisp pronunciation and consistent pace keeps listeners engaged and at ease.
  • (book) Beyond Reason: Using Emotions as you Negotiate. Fisher and Shapiro have structured this latest work around five key emotions which they identify as most critical to productive negotiations. Even though each situation has its own dynamics, they point to appreciation, affiliation, autonomy, status, and role as the most important for making each party comfortable enough to grasp the principles of rationality that maximize the chances for a win-win result.
  • (book) Emotional Intelligence: Why it Can Matter. More than IQ New York Times science writer Goleman argues that our emotions play a much greater role in thought, decision making and individual success than is commonly acknowledged. He defines “emotional intelligence” as a trait not measured by IQ tests, as a set of skills, including control of one’s impulses, self-motivation, empathy and social competence in interpersonal relationships.


  • (Book) 201 Icebreakers, Group Mixers, Warm-Ups, Energizers, and Playful Activities. Designed specifically for trainers, speakers, and group facilitators, this 400-page cookbook of playful group mixers helps to “break the ice” among participants at the beginning of any meeting, or to recharge participants on the brink of boredom. Complete with guidelines, these simple activities-like games, energizers, brain-teasers, and quizzes-require little or no preparation time, and most can be completed in less than 5 minutes. Also included are props and hand-outs that can be photocopied for the entire group to enjoy.
  • (book)  Junkyard Sports. Junkyard Sports is a collection of activities students can play, and use to create their own sport from their experiences. Students can take previous sport knowledge, play with a different piece of equipment or “junk” within that game, and create a new sport. Every junkyard sport is a combination of rules from different sports, and another sport’s equipment or toy. Winning is not determined by points, but playing together is winning.
  • (book)  Working With Groups to Enhance Relationships. This book offers 39 interactive activities to assist men and women in developing meaningful relationships. Each activity offers a safe environment for individuals to build communications skills, encourage cooperation, and rekindle companionship in their committed relationships. Believing each person is the expert in their own lives, the authors designed the exercises to build on each person’s life experiences. Individuals are asked to challenge their inner critical voices and to experience new and different ways of being, interacting, and communicating. They are empowered to make choices that match their intentions.

General Psychology

  • (book) Gut Feelings: The Intelligence of the Unconscious. Gigerenzer draws on his own research as well as that of other psychologists to show how even experts rely on intuition to shape their judgment, going so far as to ignore available data in order to make snap decisions. Sometimes, the solution to a complex problem can be boiled down to one easily recognized factor, he says, and the author uses case studies to show that the Take the Best approach often works.
  • (book) On Being Certain: Believing you are Right even when you’re not. In On Being Certain, neurologist Robert Burton shows that feeling certain—feeling that we know something— is a mental sensation, rather than evidence of fact. An increasing body of evidence suggests that feelings such as certainty stem from primitive areas of the brain and are independent of active, conscious reflection and reasoning. In other words, the feeling of knowing happens to us; we cannot make it happen. Bringing together cutting-edge neuroscience, experimental data, and fascinating anecdotes, Robert Burton explores the inconsistent and sometimes paradoxical relationship between our thoughts and what we actually know. Provocative and groundbreaking, On Being Certain challenges what we know (or think we know) about the mind, knowledge, and reason.

Laughter As Therapy

  • (book) Laughter Therapy: How To Laugh About Everything In Your Life That Isn’t Really Funny. Laughter Therapy is a two-part book. Part one is a theoretical framework for understanding laughter and other forms of catharsis. Included are case studies and examples of laughter. Part one and two are liberally sprinkled with appropriate quotes. Part two contains 25 ways to help yourself laugh and how to relearn to laugh without ridicule in order to maximize healing and connection with ourselves, each other and the universe.

Laughter & Children

  • (book) Kids Who Laugh : How to Develop Your Child’s Sense of Humor. This is an interesting, easy to read, informative book. Positive and full of good ideas. It dispels for once and for all the myth that some of us are born with a sense of humor and some are not. The author shows that this is not true. Everybody, especially kids, can learn to develop, and use, their sense of humor. Great examples and practices as well as interesting websites are chronicled. Exceptional children are also taken into consideration. As the author says, “exceptional kids like to laugh too.” Don’t we all.
  • (book) Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child. The authors identify a five-step “emotion coaching” process to help teach children how to recognize and address their feelings, which includes becoming aware of the child’s emotions; recognizing that dealing with these emotions is an opportunity for intimacy; listening empathetically; helping the child label emotions; setting limits; and problem-solving.
  • (book) The Laughing Classroom: Everyone’s Guide to Teaching with Humor and Play. As a vehicle to build communities, create a positive classroom climate, reduce stress, and add the critical element of humor to the classroom, this book is an excellent tool filled with engaging activities and helpful resources. A great addition to anyone’s bag of tricks!


  • (book)  Authentic Happiness – Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment. Thankfully, his lengthy homage to happiness may actually live up to the ambitious promise of its subtitle. Seligman doesn’t just preach the merits of happiness e.g., happy people are healthier, more productive and contentedly married than their unhappy counterparts but he also presents brief tests and even an interactive Web site (the launch date is set for mid-August) to help readers increase the happiness quotient in their own lives.
  • (book) Belly Laughter for Couples: The Belly Laughter Workbook. The Belly Laughter Workbook presents a valuable, positive message and shows readers how to practically integrate laughter into their relationships on a daily basis. Enda Junkins encourages couples to laugh together by using techniques which invite laughter into such issues as: Getting the love you need; Handling criticism; Avoiding the power struggle; Resolving conflict; Communicating more effectively; Dealing with serious issues. Through questions, exercises, and self-tests, readers learn how to laugh together and keep their relationships fun, healthy, and long lasting.
  • (book) Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life. ”One of the most important books of the century–an absolute must-read for all persons interested in genuinely understanding and helping our fellow human beings.” —Dr. Robert H. Schuller, author of Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do
  • (book) Living with Enthusiasm: How the 21-Day Smile Diet Can Change Your Life. This book about giving yourself permission to enjoy life right now instead of waiting for the vacation that’s still six months away. It’s about learning how to create joyful moments every day, even in difficult times – and more importantly that it is critical to your health that you do so. You’ll discover 21 days of inspiration, motivation, easy-to-do action steps and over 100 tips for staying enthusiastic every day including: The 16-Second Smile, The Ohhh Effect, Factor of Five, Just for Now, Act As If, and the Laughing Meditation.
  • (book) Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life. Known simply as “The Work,” Byron Katie’s methods are clean and straightforward. The basis is a series of four questions addressed to your own lists of written assumptions. Whether you’re angry with your boss, frustrated with your teen’s behavior, or appalled at the state of the world’s environment, Katie suggests you write down your most honest thoughts on the matter, and then begin the examination. Starting with, “Is it true?” and continuing with explorations of “Who would you be without that thought?” this method allows you to get through unhelpful preconceptions and find peace. An integral part of the process is “turning the thought around,” and at first this can seem like you’re simply blaming yourself for everything. Push a little harder, and you’ll find a very responsible acceptance of reality, beyond questions of fault and blame.
  • (book) Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. Mindset is “an established set of attitudes held by someone,” says the Oxford American Dictionary. It turns out, however, that a set of attitudes needn’t be so set, according to Dweck, professor of psychology at Stanford. Dweck proposes that everyone has either a fixed mindset or a growth mindset. A fixed mindset is one in which you view your talents and abilities as… well, fixed. In other words, you are who you are, your intelligence and talents are fixed, and your fate is to go through life avoiding challenge and failure. A growth mindset, on the other hand, is one in which you see yourself as fluid, a work in progress. Your fate is one of growth and opportunity. Which mindset do you possess? Dweck provides a checklist to assess yourself and shows how a particular mindset can affect all areas of your life, from business to sports and love. The good news, says Dweck, is that mindsets are not set: at any time, you can learn to use a growth mindset to achieve success and happiness. This is a serious, practical book. Dweck’s overall assertion that rigid thinking benefits no one, least of all yourself, and that a change of mind is always possible, is welcome.
  • (book) Talent is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else. According to distinguished journalist Geoff Colvin, both the hard work and natural talent camps are wrong. What really makes the difference is a highly specific kind of effort-“deliberate practice”-that few of us pursue when we’re practicing golf or piano or stockpicking. Based on scientific research, Talent is Overrated shares the secrets of extraordinary performance and shows how to apply these principles. It features the stories of people who achieved world-class greatness through deliberate practice-including Benjamin Franklin, comedian Chris Rock, football star Jerry Rice, and top CEOs Jeffrey Immelt and Steven Ballmer.

Stress Reduction

  • (book) Mastery of Your Anxiety and Panic: Workbook (Treatments That Work). This workbook is a one-of-a-kind resource that has been recommended for use by public health services around the world. It allows you to work alongside your therapist to personalize your treatment strategy and learn recovery skills that are useful for a lifetime.
  • (book) Mind over Mood: Change how you Feel by Changing the Way You Think. Developed by two master clinicians with extensive experience in cognitive therapy treatment and training, this popular workbook shows readers how to improve their lives using cognitive therapy/m-/one of the most effective and widely practiced forms of psychotherapy. The book is designed to be used alone or in conjunction with professional treatment. Step-by-step worksheets teach specific skills that have helped thousands of people conquer depression, panic attacks, anxiety, anger, guilt, shame, low self-esteem, eating disorders, substance abuse and relationship problems. Readers learn to use mood questionnaires to identify, rate, and track changes in feelings; change the thoughts that contribute to problems; follow step-by-step strategies to improve moods; and take action to improve daily living and relationships. The book’s large-size format and lay-flat binding facilitate reading and writing ease.
  • (book) Principles and Practice of Stress Management. “This is the best single book published to date on stress management. It incorporates salient reviews of the literature as well as practical information for implementing these interventions. Not only are a wide variety of treatments considered, but there are chapters on their use in specific disorders…5 stars!”
  • (dvd) Stress – Portrait of a Killer. This DVD shows how animal and human bodies are affected by stress, the harm and dangers. The threats especially to the brain, cardiovascular system and chromosomes are emphasized. Pregnant mothers under stress can transmit stress hormones into the fetus whose nervous system changes and in adult life becomes more prone to stress, stress related diseases and depression. The information here is based mostly on a Stanford University professor’s study on baboons, who specializes in the neuropsychology of stress.(book) The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook. Although the sheer size of this dense workbook might cause initial hyperventilation–280 full-size sheets of text–take heart (and a deep breath!): the many self-assessment tools and calming techniques presented in this fifth edition can help overcome anxiety and promote physical and emotional well-being.
  • (book) The 7 Aha’s of Highly Enlightened Souls. This little book strips away the illusions that surround the modern malaise we call stress. Then, in seven insights, it reminds us of the essence of all the different paths of spiritual wisdom.
  • (book) The Self Esteem Workbook. A host of dysfunctional and self-destructive patterns arise at minor and acute levels if an individual dislikes him- or herself. Despite the importance of self-esteem, surprisingly little attention has been focused on building it directly, until now. Designed in an easy-to-use format, The Self-Esteem Workbook presents a course in self-esteem based on new research and sound principles.
  • (book) When Panic Attacks: The New Drug-Free Anxiety Therapy that can Change Your Life. In When Panic Attacks, Dr. Burns teaches forty simple, effective techniques to help dispell fear. He also shares the latest research on the drugs commonly prescribed for anxiety and depression and explains why they may sometimes do more harm than good. This is not pop psychology but proven, fast-acting techniques that have been shown to be more effective than medications.
  • (book) Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers. With wit, graceful writing, and a sprinkling of Far Side cartoons, Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers makes understanding the science of stress an adventure in discovery. “This book is a primer about stress, stress-related disease, and the mechanisms of coping with stress. How is it that our bodies can adapt to some stressful emergencies, while other ones make us sick? Why are some of us especially vulnerable to stress-related diseases, and what does that have to do with our personalities?”


  • Laughter: A Scientific Investigation. Is it really the best medicine? Neurobiologist Robert R. Provine discovered that no scientist had ever looked into the weird, uncontrollable, and very human phenomenon of laughter, so he started off on his own. Laughter: A Scientific Investigation is his warm and–of course–funny report on how and why we giggle and snort with such regularity. Basing his views on field research conducted in a broad array of social situations (laughter being notoriously difficult to evoke in the laboratory), Provine posits that we use it as a universal, preverbal means of communication. Though animal research is controversial, it suggests that apes establish and maintain relationships using laughlike behavior, so it could be the missing link between animal communication and true language. He also explores instances in which we seem to laugh our way into and out of social situations, and includes a list of tips for keeping the laughs flowing. The irony of the scientific community not taking laughter seriously isn’t lost on Provine, and he takes every opportunity to remind his fellows that even the seemingly most trivial matters can hide the most profound truths. If that isn’t funny, what is?
  • Breathe Deep, Laugh Loudly – The Joy Of Transformational Breathing. This book gives a great overview of how breathing affects us physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
  • Who Stole My Soul? This book is the story of  Vishwa, a very successful businessman who fell in love with Laughter Yoga.

Top 3 fool-proof ways to incorporate more laughter into your life

Do you want more laughter into your life? Here are 3 simple, fool-proof, time tested ideas to guarantee that you will laugh more in the coming year and decades to follow. They’ve worked for hundreds of thousands of people and they will work for you too.

  1. Just do it.
  2. Just do it.
  3. Just do it.

You do not need to ask for permission, buy a laugh track or find anything amusing.

Simply decide to laugh more and just do it, anytime, anywhere, just because you want to.

It doesn’t get any easier nor more complicated than this. The miracle cure is already within you. All you need is the desire to manifest it and that will require a little bit of effort and occasionally courage.

Why leave laughter to chance?

TLP #2: Tips For Laughter Pros

Friday, 12/31/2010

Public Speaking

Classic handout tip
At NSA in 1981 Joel Weldon taught: At the beginning of a program, everyone is asked to raise their hands and pledge, “I hereby promise” (they repeat) “not to peek ahead” (they repeat) “in my handout” (they repeat… and usually laugh). I add to this, “If you already peeked, don’t feel guilty (small laugh). You had not pledged yet (small laugh). I just want to know when I’m on page 5, you are on 5, when I’m on 25, you are on 25 (small laugh). Besides, there are no secrets there. We will cover it all, I assure you.” Then tell them if they finish an assignment early or come back from lunch or a break and have no one to talk to, they DO have permission to jump to the back section and read some of the articles you have written on the subject. You will get about 95% compliance.

Adding value and following through with your participants?
We often hear that providing follow-up and follow-through, especially with seminars or break-out sessions, ensures additional learning takes place. There/ are creative ways to add value during the seminar as well. Your clients will appreciate knowing that their attendees are getting additional value from your program. Many of us research our client’s needs by interviewing people who will be attending the conference, and/or arriving the night before our program to get acquainted with them. You may want to:

Do a lot of “crowd sourcing,” and ask them what they want from the conference. The best advisors are the participants themselves. If suggestions are out of scope, consider:

  • Expanding your thinking to include some of their new ideas, if applicable, even partially, and giving credit for them (the participants give great suggestions, but some may be far-reaching);
  • Involving the participants and use the “new” ideas as a topic for small-group discussion during the seminar;
  • Writing an article or white paper, to expand the additional ideas and show how they fit in with your topic area. Put the article on your website and send the link for them to read it.
  • When their suggestions do not fit in with your topic, offering a webinar to encourage additional learning is a way to provide a follow-up program that may include the new content.

If you make an additional connection with the participants, it encourages them to think about the content in another way. You ensure follow-through when you contact attendees after the seminar to see if their expectations were met, and then reinforce the key learning points.

Good Business Practices

Let your clients give you away

The idea is to have your clients pay for your services, and then give you away to someone else they want to impress with Laughter Yoga. Have a gift certificate ready, and a welcome letter with a Quickie Client Profile and expectations. Next, make sure your existing clients know that they can buy these gift certificates from you. They will pay you, have the opportunity to impress their own clients, and what a referral system!

Technology Corner

Mac Word conversion tip
Here’s a tip for those on a Mac computer who can’t open a Word document in the new format, docx. There’s a free online converter that does it instantly.
Mobile computing article
Good reminders in this article: websites and emails need to be readable on cell phones. Make it easy for people to find you — always include contact information on each email and each web page.


30 Best Internet Marketing and SEO Blogs
Here is a list of 30 great SEO blogs that will help you learn more about SEO