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A Time-Tested Organic Medicine for Stress, Anxiety and Depression

Everyone has tough days and for some the days seem to be a never ending string of murkiness. All of our mental afflictions, stress, anxiety, depression, addictive urges and trauma responses are experienced as contractions in the body. An antidote to this would naturally be opening the body up and that is one among many reasons why yoga can be helpful. But to take it one step further, laughter opens our bodies up, vibrates core areas where the stuck energy resides while simultaneously igniting resiliency centers of the brain.

Do yourself a favor, simply watch this 3-minute video and see what you notice:

Laughter is a stress reliever and it’s wise to add it in as a natural medicine to whatever anti-anxiety or anti-depressant regimen you’re using. But you don’t need to go to India to practice this and in fact, you can benefit from this without even having a group to do it with.

If you’re in comfortable place with no one around, try just laughing to yourself for about 15 seconds and see how your mind and body feels.

If you notice a lift, have gratitude for this. In fact, spread this feeling of gratitude out to all the people and places in the world where healing and gratitude is needed. May all people feel an alleviation of suffering, may we all be able to enjoy love and laughter again.

You can take this practice into subtle areas of your life by practicing smiling and see if it’s contagious to others.

As Thich Nhat Hanh says, “Breathing in I calm my body, breathing out I smile.”

If you just read this and didn’t try any of it out, put down your judgments and defenses and play a little, no one is watching. Allow your experience to be your teacher. This may be one of the best gifts you’ve given yourself in quite a while.

As always, please share your thoughts, stories and questions below. Your interaction creates a living wisdom for us all to benefit from.

A Time-Tested Organic Medicine for Stress, Anxiety and Depression


Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. is creator of the six month online program A Course in Mindful Living, author of the book Uncovering Happiness: Overcoming Depression with Mindfulness and Self-Compassion, The Now Effect, co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, Foreword by Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of Mindfulness Meditations for the Anxious Traveler: Quick Exercises to Calm Your Mind, the premier eCourse Basics of Mindfulness Meditation: A 28 Day Program, the Mindful Solutions audio series, and the Mindfulness at Work™ program currently being adopted in multiple multinational corporations. Join The Now Effect Community for free Daily Now Moments and a Weekly Newsletter. Dr. Goldstein is a clinical psychologist in private practice in West Los Angeles.


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APA Reference
Goldstein, E. (2013). A Time-Tested Organic Medicine for Stress, Anxiety and Depression. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 5, 2019, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/mindfulness/2013/05/a-time-tested-organic-medicine-for-stress-anxiety-and-depression/

 

Last updated: 9 May 2013
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