Laughter and feeling connected are so important to our mental health and well being – especially as we age.
Laughter & feeling connected – why it is so important
Research has shown that laughter is good for us physically, mentally and spiritually. It reduces stress, increases our sense of well being and lifts our moods. There are even laughter groups to encourage people to laugh and feel good.
The Mayo Clinic writes that data is increasing to show the health benefits of laughter. A post on their website, Stress Relief from Laughter – It’s no joke suggests:
When you start to laugh, it doesn’t just lighten your load mentally, it actually induces physical changes in your body.
If you follow my blog, you will know that this month is my month of Health & Wellness and laughter and feeling connected is an important aspect of this.
Recently I spent three glorious days spending time with my cousins. My cousin and her daughter flew from Sydney to Adelaide and I joined them to reunite with one of our cousins who I hadn’t seen for 40 years!!! Obviously we were only babies then LOL:)
The ‘Cousins’ Reunion’ had been planned last year and I was so excited to be finally seeing my cousin April after such a long time. We had been friends on Facebook for ages but it isn’t the same as seeing each other in person.
I went through a period of my life where I dropped out of ‘family’ and although at the time I thought it was the right thing to do I miss that connection. I finally reunited with my cousin who was always like an older sister to me and is also my godmother. After a 20 year absence we connected immediately as if there had been no time apart. That was 5 years ago and I’m so happy I made the effort to reconnect as my life has been richer for it.
Our three days were spent sightseeing around Adelaide through the Adelaide Hills and the Barossa Valley. The last day was a quick trip to the Coast and beaches of Port Willunga and Port Noarlunga both were stunning.
So what was my take away from the ‘Cousins’ Reunion’?
Laughter IS REALLY HEALTHY FOR YOU and I don’t do it as often as I should.
Feeling connected with others adds to the richness of my life.
We laughed until the tears ran and for three days we shared this laughter, fun times and reminiscing about family and times past.
This trip was certainly good for my soul. I came home feeling refreshed, revitalised and a warmth inside for these three special ladies in my life.
Family connections are not always what we wish for. There is a saying that ‘You can choose your friends but not your family’. This is true for many, however feeling connected is not restricted to family. Friends are just as important and in some cases can mean a closer connection than with our family members.
As we age, it can be so easy to withdraw especially in our later years but staying connected keeps us mentally active and feeling a sense of being part of something.