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Laughter yoga can help you stick to New Year resolutions: seriously!

Just before the clock strikes midnight, ringing in 2021, will you be making a New Year’s resolution?

The most common being spoken of for the coming year (in no particular order) are said to be: 

  • Lose weight/be healthier
  • Reduce stress
  • Travel
  • Spend less time online
  • Save more money
  • Be confident
  • Be grateful
  • Improve relationships
  • Learn something new
  • Fall in love.

Is one yours here? More importantly will you see it through? Very few, it seems, do.

Why do new year resolutions fail?

Psychologists and life coaches will most often reason that it’s because the resolution wasn’t:

  • specific
  • realistic
  • measured
  • planned.

Maybe there wasn’t enough’ buy-in’. Do YOU really want the change or are you doing it for someone (or something) else?

How laughter yoga helps achieve New Year resolutions

Laughter yoga, the exercise regimen that harnesses laughter as a physical action rather than an intellectual reaction to humour, can actually help achieve any and all of these resolutions. I kid you not. Here’s how…

New Year Resolution #1: Lose Weight/Exercise More

person running
Not a fan of running? Try internal jogging. That’s what laughter yoga is!

Maybe you succumbed to some comfort eating during #ISO and it didn’t shift when restrictions lifted. You’re not alone! Part of the challenge is mindset – and laughter yoga helps address that. 

Laughter yoga is also a light cardio activity that’s incredibly accessible. Dr William Fry, considered to be the ‘father of gelotology’ (the science of laughter), found that 20 seconds of intense laughter doubled the heart rate for three to five minutes. Personally, I love to stretch and move with big actions when doing laughter yoga but I know that positive impacts are delivered when it’s also done in a less mobile, seated, gentle way. 

Laughter does burn kilojoules. American research reveals those who laugh heartily burn 20% more kilojoules and that 10-15 minutes of laughter every day can burn 2.2 kilograms a year.

New Year Resolution #2: Reduce Stress

Dial down your stress levels with laughter yoga.

Laughter yoga is a process proven to reduce emotional, physical, and mental stress – in minutes! Participants in my online ‘Laughter Playroom’ sessions repeatedly report a greater sense of relaxation/less stress.

New Year Resolution #3: Travel

Use your imagination to travel and do what you want to do.

Forget COVID restrictions, closed borders, quarantine and ISO, laughter yoga lets us go on an ‘instant vacation’: our imagination is boundless. In our minds we can be anywhere, doing anything. 

In my Laughter Playroom online sessions, we’ve surfed in Hawaii, tramped through Borneo jungles, gone on an African safari, swum with dolphins, and walked on the moon… With playful laughter exercises, there’s no stopping our travel.

New Year Resolution #4: Spend Less Time Online

Technology use is not what we’re hardwired for.

2020 saw many of us spending more time online for work and play. Online laughter yoga played an important part in mental well-being and resilience throughout 2020 ISO.

Research increasingly points to our interactions with technology and living in a technocentric society, increasing a kind of pacemaker within us. As the pace of life increases, we feel our available time decreases and we feel more pressured by time. This ‘sped up’ brain adds to stress.

We humans are hardwired to connect when we’re eyeball to eyeball. If less time online is a resolution, consider going to a social laughter club, usually in a park or public space. You’ll see people (while maintaining physical distancing), exercise your lungs, body, and mind, and enjoy fresh air. Laughter club locations in Queensland are listed here.

New Year Resolution #5: Save Money 

Saving money and want to be healthy and social: a social laughter club could be the answer.

Laughter yoga requires no special clothes or equipment – and social laughter clubs are free or very low cost with no membership fee!  They’re very different to comedy clubs: you will laugh!

New Year Resolution #6: Be Confident

Laughter yoga encourages you to take yourself less seriously. It brings a smile to your face. You feel good, positive, capable. You’ve got this!

New Year Resolution #7: Be Grateful 

Laughter yoga is like flicking the switch on thought processes. Through laughter, you develop a keen appreciation for little things. You become grounded and grateful.

New Year Resolution #8: Improve Relationship with Others and Self

Become more loving and accepting of yourself and others

Laughter yoga breaks down interpersonal barriers fast, creating connection. You find a common ‘humanity’ through laughing with others. Laughter yoga encourages us to be kinder, more accepting and less critical of others, and ourselves.

New Year Resolution #9: Learn Something New

Laughter yoga can help you tick this one off. 2-day workshop teaching laughter yoga leader skills is in Brisbane. It’s a skillset sought after by people working with others, wanting to strengthen their mental wellbeing. Find out more.

New Year Resolution #10: Fall in Love

Laughter yoga helps achieve the most common New Year resolutions. While I make no guarantee that you’ll fall in love at a laughter yoga session, there is irrefutable scientific evidence that men and women find people who laugh more attractive. What have you to lose?

Seems to me you can’t go wrong in turning to laughter yoga for your New Year’s resolution success.

Tell me: what’s your resolution going to be? 

Consider hosting a workplace or community group laughter yoga session to inspire others to meet their New Year goals: Contact me to secure a special deal for in-person or online sessions in January 2021.

© 2020 HeatherJoy Campbell

Heather Joy Campbell is a laughter wellbeing professional based in Brisbane, Australia. A certified laughter yoga teacher who has also pursued science of happiness studies, she’s a global ambassador for Laughter Yoga International.