What is the link between a Yorkshire Terrier with false teeth and creative business solutions?
I started the week with a couple of fantastic 1:1 chats with other business owners. Very different conversations yet one very strong theme came through and that was the importance of having more fun and the power of laughter in all aspects of our lives.
I don’t need to tell you that there’s a lot of things to be less than cheerful about right now. However, they do say laughter is the best medicine but what are the benefits, and can they help in our business too?
As this isn’t my area of expertise, I thought I’d have a quick Google and see if I could find some facts to share with you.
Apparently, there is a branch of science dedicated to this very area.
Gelotology (from the Greek γέλως gelos “laughter”) is the study of laughter and its effects on the body, from a psychological and physiological perspective. Researchers have found that humour and laughter is a very complex cognitive function and the evidence to support benefits for health and well-being is mounting.
When you start to laugh, it actually induces physical changes in your body.
- Enhance your intake of oxygen-rich air, which stimulates your heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins that are released by your brain
- Stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which can help reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress.
- Improve your immune system. Negative thoughts manifest into chemical reactions that can affect your body by bringing more stress into your system and decreasing your immunity. By contrast, positive thoughts can actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more-serious illnesses.
- Relieve pain. Laughter may ease pain by causing the body to produce its own natural painkillers.
Furthermore, laughter can also help you solve problems which demand creative solutions, by making it easier to think more broadly and associate ideas and relationships more freely.
When you laugh you stimulates both sides of the brain, activating the limbic system in the brain and connecting the right and left sides which in turn enhances learning. Also, humour releases tension, which can lead to perceptual flexibility—a required component of creativity.
So my challenge to you is to introduce more laughter into your day. Far from distracting you from making tough business decisions it may actually help you to come up with more creative solutions.
To get you started here is a ridiculous video which I could not help but laugh at! Turn on the sound too, the guy’s laugh is infectious too!