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Blogs and articles on Laughter Benefits & Health News | Laughter is the Best Medicine

Academics really not happy about having to be happy at work

Here is a rather-unexpected-but-not-really-surprising news from Australia: RMIT University staff will fight against a new behavioral code that demands they promote positivity and show passion at work.

Why?

…Ms Gale said the code threatened the ability of academic and professional staff to carry out their work. ”We’re talking about a university community. People are supposed to be skeptical and questioning. That’s their job.”

Our viewpoint: ignorance is and remains the biggest enemy. Laughter opens up doors and allows you to see more, not less. Try this.

Read the full article here

Merv’s Blog, March 2012

Laughter Yoga Psychological Research Study

At the 2011 Australasian Conference we were visited by the 60 Minutes TV team. For those of you who aren’t aware of them, 60 Minutes, both here and overseas, has been one of the longest running and most highly respected current affairs shows in the history of television. They were in “The Pursuit of Happiness” and said at the end of their segment that “they never really got happier than they did in the most infectious atmosphere of this quite mad but lovable group of Laughter Clubbers”. In that same segment they interviewed a Professor Robert Cummins who is the Head of Psychology and “Happiness Expert” at Deakin University. So when I got back to Melbourne I gave him a call and suggested we meet. He invited me to lunch and said that it could be an opportunity for some final year psychology students to do their thesis on Laughter Yoga. I said YES ! ! !

How will this work

What followed was amazing. There was a queue of students who wanted to be involved. From that queue, Dr Melissa Weinberg (assistant to Professor Cummins), selected four of the best and brightest students to conduct a series of studies under her watchful and wise eyes. From there they devised a series of psychometric tests that they wished to conduct on a group of Laughter Yoga Club members, as well as a business, who would adopt Laughter Yoga as part of their daily routine over a one month period.

Why

What they’re looking for is the impact that Laughter Yoga has on the participants’ wellbeing, relationships, self-esteem, optimism and control, job satisfaction, perceived health, stress and anxiety levels, mood, and risk taking behavior.

Who

For that reason we require two things. We need a minimum of 50 Laughter Yoga Club Members who can attend a Laughter Club every week for a month, along with a business or organization that can contribute a minimum of 50 employees to do a Laughter Yoga session on a daily basis over a one month period.

What

What they intend to do is carry out questionnaires on the people involved before, during, and then after them being involved in a Laughter Yoga session.

When

This whole process will commence in May and be completed by September or October. It will provide the world at large, but more specifically the psychological fraternity, with the impact on the mind of Laughter Yoga.

So here is my plea…can anyone out there help me???

Are you prepared to be a part of medical and Laughter Yoga history to help us get the official accreditation of what we all know to be true…AND…can you seek out an organization that would be willing to help us with this project. The only criteria is that they have to have a minimum of 50 people who would be willing to do Laughter Yoga every morning for a month and be located in Melbourne or the surrounding suburbs. I look forward to your calls on 0408 552269 or emails to mervneal@laughteryoga.org

 

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60 pages on how the practice of Laughter Yoga effect the lives of Laughter Yoga professionals

Here is the 60 pages thesis that Vasiliki Skrekou from Greece wrote for her Masters degree at the Center for Applied Psychology (John Moores University, Liverpool, UK) on the Effect of Laughter Yoga Practice on the lives of Laughter Yoga Professionals.

Laughter Yoga is powerful stuff indeed.

Did you doubt? Click here to download this document (PDF)

Merv’s Blog, February 2012

Laughter Yoga Business Training

If you’re reading this newsletter you probably run or attend a Laughter Club. These should be run and provided for free barring overheads or running costs for venues and insurance if required. At some stage however there is every chance that you will be asked to do a paid Laughter Yoga session by someone maybe for a group or business or organization. If you do you will be asked for a BIO to introduce yourself, how much you will charge, what you will do, what people will learn by attending, along with another dozen questions. You will then have to spend some time constructing the presentation to satisfy the needs of the organizer. This whole process can be a little overwhelming, and in the least confusing, unless you’ve been trained to handle these situations. For this reason Laughter Yoga International, in conjunction with myself, have created a 2 Day Laughter Yoga Business Training program

Day 1 Training

On Day 1 you learn how to present yourself to a business client. This part is important because business people like to deal with business people…or at least those who understand business. You will also learn the importance of how to construct a full presentation to enable the attendees to be informed and educated as well as entertained.

Day 2 Training

Day 2 is all about how to run a financially sustainable business as well as how to market it. This is important if you would like to make a living from Laughter Yoga. Imagine having a job where you get paid to help people find their true laughter. It’s very fulfilling but not something that happens by chance. It takes strategy, planning, and actions that will lead you to your vision. Marketing is the rocket that propels your business forward. You will go hungry if you’re the best Laughter Yoga person around but nobody knows about you.

Australia

In Australia there are three Conferences scheduled for this year. One on the Gold Coast in June, and Perth followed by Melbourne in August.

USA

In the USA there will be training in Atlanta in March, Orlando in May, and Chicago in September. Other training will be scheduled on request.

Read more about the Laughter Yoga Business Training

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Happy new Chinese year

The Year of the Black Water Dragon starts on Sunday January 22,2012, with New Year’s Eve and begins on 2/23 with Chinese New Year’s Day.

THE YEAR OF THE DRAGON

As quoted in ‘ The Handbook of Chinese Horoscopes ‘

“A year to throw caution to the four winds and roll up your sleeves for all sorts of grandiose, exhilarating, colossal, over ambitious and daring projects!

The indomitable spirit of the Dragon will inflate everything to larger than life size.  Somehow we will find ourselves bubbling with excess energy.  However, it will be wise not to overestimate ourselves or our potentials in this combustible year.

Things appear better than they actually are – sometimes. On the brighter side, business will be good and money can be generated or obtained easily. Orientals consider this to be an auspicious year to get married, have children, or start a new business, as the benevolent Dragon brings good fortune and happiness. ”

May you and your loved ones experience all the best this Dragon Year has to offer!

Merv’s Blog, December 2011

Laughter Yoga and business

I’ve just returned from attending a Workplace Psychological Injury Management Conference that was held in Sydney. The agenda was littered with a who’s who in this field. We heard from Professors, Psychologists, Psychiatrists, Doctors, Lawyers, Lecturers and Consultants on topics such as bullying, harassment, trauma, stress, depression, anxiety, wellbeing and suicide.

Statistics don’t lie

One of the common tactics they used to make their topic relevant or important was statistics. Everything from sick days accumulated, to productivity losses, to injuries, to number of claims, and on and on they went in an ever increasing (and boring) theme. It would have been much easier if they had just all converted them to that universal statistic which everyone can understand…money.

Money is the language of business

There is one common sentence that business people use when they are looking to purchase any sorts of goods or services and here it is…”how much money will this cost (and /or make) me?” Everyone talks about the benefits and features, pros and cons, needs and wants, sizes and shapes, but businesses talk in dollars so the trick is to match any or all of the above with money.

Businesses have budgets

Depending on the size and type of business determines whether they have a budget for different things and how much they have allocated to that budget. The natural tendency for people offering Laughter Yoga presentations and workshops is to approach a large business to gain a large fee. Here’s the problem with that theory. You have to fit within that budget. Imagine talking to a business that doesn’t have a budget but understands the value of what you are providing and that value is $100,000. They’d happily pay you $50,000 to buy that from you. After all it makes business sense because business gauges things in dollars. The more you can make or save them the more they will pay.

The Laughter Yoga challenge is in the value it provides

So how can you turn Laughter Yoga into a dollar value? How much is it worth to a business to have happier staff, improved productivity, or better customer service? How much is it worth to decrease sick leave, minimize mistakes being made, or stop stress claims? The answer is easy…it depends.

Which industry needs Laughter Yoga the most

It depends on how well you sell the value of what you and Laughter Yoga have to provide, to that particular business, with or without a budget, for whatever problem you can solve, that is worth $??? to their bottom line. If you can do this then you can make a business from Laughter Yoga. If you can’t then you’re in luck because in 2012 Laughter Yoga International will be providing webinars, presentations, workshops, and retreats to provide you with these necessary skills. Stay tuned to the Laughter Yoga websites http://www.laughteryoga-australia.org and  http://www.laughteryogaamerica.com and this newsletter for updates.

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Note to Laughter Yoga Professionals: follow the news! They are filled with leads and inspiration.

It’s easy: all you have to do is look here once a week.

This week:

Depression is on the rise. Know your statistics. Quote official sources. This is invaluable in helping  your prospective  clients understand that Laughter Yoga is not a frivolous expense but a very valid investment. What we do is scientifically proven to work.

Caregivers need Laughter Yoga. Have you contacted your local groups lately?

More and more people are making Laughter Yoga their full time job. Network. Learn from them.

Seniors need to laugh and greatly benefit from it. There are 75 millions of them out there. Why not contact your local retirement communities.

What’s happening around the world can help you. Apparently ” the school syllabus somewhere in India has an entire chapter about laughter clubs and the importance of laughter to human health. If it’s done there, it could be done here. Why not contact your local schools and propose a demo session to either staff or students?

Are you hesitant to take action? Know that we have been working for months now on creating  an online Laughter Yoga University to train, help and support professionals in the field. Check it out. It will be completed soon and provide you with all the tools  and knowledge you need to be successful.

Merv’s Blog, November 2011

Laughter Yoga and the media

For as long as I have been involved with Laughter Yoga the media has been the greatest asset we have had. Very rarely if ever have we had any bad publicity or reports about us. This in itself is interesting as what we do is “unusual, weird, radical, silly, childish, crazy, and bizarre” to use just a few words I’ve seen published and heard reported. So how can we make this FREE publicity work even better for us.

Laughter Yoga and the print media

While print media is dying in it’s traditional paper format it’s continuing on line. They are always after newsworthy or community items to print depending on their target market and geographical reach. As the world is trending toward a more community based approach the best opportunity is to advertise our laughter clubs to the local community. I’ve found that attendees to my own club, along with other leaders I’ve talked to, have noticed that people generally won’t travel more than five to ten kilometers to get to a club. So local advertising is easy and the way to go.

Laughter Yoga and the radio media

Radio is the most commonly used as it’s cheap, easy, instant, and can be done from anywhere there is a phone available. Very rarely do you have to go into the studio. When asked, the best thing to do is ask if they would like you to send through the five most commonly asked questions. They always say yes and it’s easy for you to respond. Just remember not to make it too rehearsed as you want to maintain that authenticity. At the same time you want to get your message across early as interviews sometimes get cut short. Oh and don’t forget to mention you website address as that’s how people will locate you at the end of the interview.

Laughter Yoga and the TV media

TV is the most powerful as it combines pictures with the words and this is how most people learn. Also when they’re watching TV they’re usually only a few steps away from a computer to be able to research you more on the internet. Because of the pictures element the more color and movement you can provide the better. A TV interview is no time to become an introvert.

Laughter Yoga and the social media

And finally there is social media. Somebody recently stated that this is the most self indulgent form of self promotion ever created and I agree. When we’re excitedly telling the world about how wonderful we are the benefits of Laughter Yoga it’s always good to be mindful of “what’s in it for me” to the reader. It may surprise you that nobody really cares about how Laughter Yoga has changed your life but how it will change theirs. As novice media reporters this is a handy hint to remember if you want people to respond to your social media message.

Laughter Yoga and bad media

And finally there is the bad news that sometimes seeps out by any of the previous mediums. The important thing to do here is respond (or not) in a dignified way. Remember that Laughter Yoga is not for everyone and never will be and to try and convert everyone will send you crazy…if we’re not already that is (ha ha ha).s

Read more about Merv Neal