Since this website's mission is to promote art therapy activities and art for wellness, this e-zine's issue follows the tradition of offering artistic solutions for your wellness. What follows is an multi-media aid kit for boosting your wellness through smile.
We do not smile because we have a reason to smile, we smile because we are a reason to smile.
Have you laughed today? Or smiled enough?
It has been said the day on which one has not laughed is a wasted day. And that's an understatement, for the truth is, smiles and laughs are the very means to heal, recover, achieve, attract, prosper, beautify...do well in anything.
Dr. Patch Adams, played by Robin Williams, confirmed Voltaire's adage that the art of medicine consists of amusing the patient while nature cures the disease. Watch it here →
Great Ralph Waldo Emerson said that if you want to rule the world, you must keep it amused. We say, if you want to heal the world, you must keep it amused. This is where arts come in, whichever the form - visual, audio, performing, literature. Arts are known to inspire, beautify, heal, and bring smiles and fun into our lives, that is why we encourage you to use arts in your efforts to do well.
Here is a multimedia aid kit designed to convert your frown into a smile full of teeth, and keep it there for years to come.
Patch Adams Movie Trailer proving that laughter is the best medicine
Art of Smile
How to keep a smile throughout the hardships
When there is a struggle or illness or any hardship present in our lives, most people can't smile or bring themselves to laugh. This sounds normal and logical, but it's not wise or natural. Laugh is not the effect, laugh is the cause. William James couldn't put it any better when he said we don't laugh because we're happy, we are happy because we laugh. Laughing is the medicine, one given to us by nature. Our nature is to be smiling, we did it as babies, we did it as children; only when we are not in tune with our true nature we don't do it.
On average, an infant laughs nearly two hundred times a day; an adult, only twelve. Maybe they are laughing so much because they are looking at us. To be able to preserve joyousness of heart and yet to be concerned in thought: in this way we can determine good fortune and misfortune on earth, and bring to perfection everything on earth. - I Ching
It's not natural to throw chemicals at our problems. The most natural thing is to laugh the troubles off. "If you can laugh at it, you can survive it", said Bill Cosby. Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy. Thich Nhat Hanh said that. Humour gives us a different perspective on our problems. If we can make light out of the situation, see the funny side of it, it is no longer threatening to us.
Just because you're miserable doesn't mean you can't enjoy your life. - Annette Goodheart
The comic and the tragic lie inseparably close, like light and shadow. - Socrates
What strikes the oyster shell does not damage the pearl. - Mevlana Rumi
← very,very funny babies
If you are like most people, you need a reason to smile. Can't blame you. And again, if you are like most people, that reason should have something to do with humour or fun, right?
What if we told you of hundreds of more reasons to smile, ones that put money in your pocket, love in your life, pain away, and beauty on your face?
Here they are:
Art of Smile
REASONS TO SMILE
Reasons to smile are not limited to fun factor. Here are the ones related to health, wealth, relationships and beauty:
Smile makes you resilient.
You need to laugh off any illness, because your recovery depends on it.
One of the most famous American comedians, Groucho Marx said "A clown is like an aspirin, only he works twice as fast."
The list of all the health benefits of smile and laugh is so long, we can't possibly cover it here. Just to name a few:
Smiling is an instant "circuit breaker" during times of stress. When we smile our body releases feel-good hormones, while the stress hormone, cortisol, is reduced.
A good laugh relaxes tense muscles, speeds more oxygen into our system and lowers our blood pressure. Laughter alleviates bronchitis and asthma - it improves lung capacity and oxygen levels in the blood.
All these foster our immune system so that it can fight back effectively when harmful conditions strike.
Ten minutes of genuine belly laughter has an anesthetic effect.
Several studies have shown that watching as little as 30 or 60 minutes of a comedy video is enough to increase levels of immunoglobulin A in both saliva and blood. Immunoglobulin A is a part of immune system which serves to protect us against bacterial infections and upper respiratory problems, like colds and the flu.
Laughter also increases levels of a substance called Complement 3, which helps antibodies pierce through defective or infected cells in order to destroy them.
Laughter is internal jogging - it massages internal organs by enhancing the blood supply and increasing their efficiency. This is especially good for proper bowel movement.
Laughter causes reduction of muscle tension, as well as the production of endorphins, two of the body’s natural pain killers.
Norman Cousins drew the attention of the medical community to the pain-reducing power of humour in his book 'Anatomy of an Illness'. This spinal disease left him in almost constant pain. But he quickly discovered while watching comedy films that belly laughter eased his pain. In his last book, 'Head First: The Biology of Hope', he noted that 10 minutes of belly laughter (just counting the laughing time) would give him two hours of pain-free sleep. Over a dozen studies have now documented that humor does have the power to reduce pain in many patients.
Smile makes you money
“A laugh is money in a man’s pocket, because it cuts down the doctor’s bills.” - 'Tom Sawyer' by Mark Twain
You can't afford not to smile, 'cause not smiling leads to not having.
A person who performs his duties with a smile has much greater chance at getting promotion or sales than his other colleagues. Which translates to more chances to make real money.
There is a Chinese proverb that says that the person who can not smile should not set up a shop. No arguing there. Would you like to buy from a shopkeeper who keeps a smile to himself, and gives you a frown instead?
A smile attracts customers because it not only breaks the barriers between the two persons but also projects the confidence of a salesman in himself and his products. In order to succeed in any venture related to public relations and service, you must learn to smile and your smile should be as genuine as your product.
Smile is capable of soothing your nerves and energizing your mind and helps you swim smoothly through the tides of business ventures. Smile relieves tension and creates a positive mind frame enabling you to reach at the best solution of the problem without being swayed away by the bogus fears and unfounded doubts.
Humour improves: Team building, communication skills, conflict management, stress management, productivity, morale, job satisfaction, creativity, problem solving, resilience, confidence...
Humour boosts sales - humour helps break down any initial objections the potential buyer has by creating a positive emotional disposition toward both you and the product or idea. It also holds the buyer’s attention.
Humour energizes employees - feeling of being drained and stressed is a commonplace experience among any workforce. Most employees feel burned out. And this is precisely why leaders in many companies make it a top priority to find ways to revitalize their work force with fun curriculum.
Smile is your most effective business tool. You can sell anything through it. Some businessmen may say “‘how can we smile when we are stressed - facing countless hardships and fierce competition everyday”. But they forget that it is the smile that is capable of releasing their tensions and energizing their minds so that they can make all the right decisions and play a bigger role in the business world.
Smiling makes you attractive.
Smile cheers others up making them more receptive to us. It's a welcome mat. It's what makes folks approachable. People with a great smiles radiate a warmth that draws others to them instantly.
Wearing a smile impacts a person's confidence level. And confidence is sexy.
Sometimes you feel you have nothing more to give. We all have something to give. That something is a simple smile.
It's absolutely true that 'laugh and the whole world laughs with you'. Smile connects people. It closes any gap there might be. It's an universal language that brings us all together, and dissolves a false sense of separateness. The separateness - that is so much a part of most people's daily life - it vanishes, even if only for a while. And that is what is so extra-ordinary about smile and why smile is so desired. Through smile we bond. It's what separates us from animals and other living beings, who can't smile. It's what makes us superior, in a sense. Smiling is being human. It's a feature reserved for humanity. You smile, you show your humanity.
Laughter is not at all a bad beginning for a friendship, and it is far the best ending for one - Oscar Wilde
Laughter is the shortest distance between two people. - Victor Borge
Smiling makes you beautiful
Laughter is anti-ageing, it nourishes the skin and makes it glow.
It tones up the right muscles in a face giving it a natural face-lift.
Don't like to work out? No problem. Laugh instead. Laughter stimulates heart and blood circulation and is equivalent to any other standard aerobic exercise.
Did you know, laughing heartily 100 times a day gives the same cardio results as working out for 20 minutes! One minute of laughter is equal to 10 minutes on the rowing machine. Laughter exercises the abdominal muscles and helps to improve muscle tone.
I've never seen a smiling face that was not beautiful.
Smile - it increases your face value.
Tip: To remind yourself of your most valuable accessory, have a sign taped on top of your mirror that reads: “You’re never fully dressed without a smile”. And never leave home without one.
It is bad to suppress laughter. It goes back down and spreads to your hips. - Fred Allen
Creator of Circumstances
So, these were some of the many reasons to smile and laugh. They tell you why you should you do it, and why should a smile or laugh be a cause, and not just an effect of your joy and happiness.
People struggle in life because they live their lives mostly reacting to what is going on around them, rather than acting original, being spectators rather than players, objects rather than subjects; focusing on effects rather than on the causes. And the way out of struggle is to raise consciousness beyond the world of effects, to the realm of cause, of the source. The way to make it in this world is to move from the world of reactions to the world of actions, from being a creature of circumstances to being a creator of circumstances. And that includes smiling to have joy, not just smiling because having joy.
There's truth in the maxim 'laughter is a drug'. A comic cartoon fires up the same brain centre as a shot of cocaine, money or a pretty face, as reported by the neuroscientists. Make sure you have enough laugh in a day, and you'll never crave for anything else.
Did you know that educated and highly intellectual people smile and laugh much less than the rest?
This is because they are more serious about life, because they take their responsibilities seriously. Nothing wrong with that, as long as it is balanced with the matching dose of fun and amusement. For those among us, who are sophisticated, it feels silly to allow oneself to be easily distracted with playful activities. But if you dare to be more childlike, your sense of humour will grow, and all that felt kind of silly, after doing it for a little while, it becomes fun. The importance of being earnest is valid only when in moderation and when it means being sincere. For our own good, wee all need to loosen up, take it easy - then the world will mirror it, reflect the ease back to us. Lighten up and the whole world lightens up with you. Here is how:
SOLUTIONS - HOW TO SMILE HERE AND NOW
“If you seek out the humour in your
everyday life, it will be there. ”
What do you do for laughs?
Do you do enough? We all know the answer to that one.
Laughing in itself will not change your problems or minimize their importance, but it will, however, change you - the way you relate to them, so that you can deal with your issues from a more realistic, less overwhelming perspective.
Contrary to folk wisdom, most laughter is not about humour; it is about relationships. To find out when and why people laugh, Robert Provine, Ph.D. and several undergraduate research assistants went to local malls and city sidewalks and recorded what happened just before people laughed. Over a 10-year period, they studied over 2,000 cases of naturally occurring laughter. They found that most laughter does not follow jokes. People laugh after a variety of statements such as “Hey John, where ya been?” “Here comes Mary,” “How did you do on the test?” and “Do you have a rubber band?”. These certainly aren’t jokes.
So here are smile elicitors that go beyond joking:
look out for funny things, then you won't miss them when they occur
laughter is associated with play, so play more - social games, sports, performances
when any intimidation comes your way, just laugh it off. Know it's not worth getting you stressed and ill - laugh your way out of stressful situation
watch all the comedies you can take, tune into your favourite sitcom on television, read a funny book, call a local humour-line to hear the latest jokes, and let it out - laugh your head off, even when the things are not that funny. Whenever you can, turn a smile into a belly laugh.
listen to this viral tune. It will put a smile on your face, whether you feel like it or not.
make it a habit to surf the net for the smile-eliciting photos, videos, comics, stories, jokes, anecdotes every single day
if you are ticklish, let someone tickle you
the best way to cheer yourself is to try to cheer someone else up, wrote Mark Twain. Become a smile elicitor. Why not? You'll get paid one way or another. Create smile-eliciting photos, videos, comics, stories, jokes, or anecdotes and broadcast them to the world.
make it a mission to present a smile to 5 strangers every day for the next 30 days, and see how it changes your life, not to mention the lives of those you give your smiles to.
count the times you give and get a smile every day. The mere act of doing it will inspire you to wear a smile more often.
consort with smiling people amap asap
get yourself a puppy - puppies can't help it but bring more smile in your life. If it's too much to ask, play with other people's dogs, even better - petsit amap if you can.
laugh at yourself
keep a sense of humour. It doesn't mean you have to tell jokes. If you can't think of anything else, when you're my age, take off your clothes and walk in front of a mirror. I guarantee you'll get a laugh. - Art Linkletter
anchoring - find an appropriate amulet or use the existing one to make it your personal smile reminder. It could be a pendant, a bracelet, a ring - something you keep always by you, and whenever you accidentally look at it, it will remind you to smile.
smile catcher - pin or hang a funny picture near your desk or anywhere you like. If you can't find a personal funny photo or picture, hang a picture of a smiley
laughter doesn't have to be genuine to be effective - whenever someone is laughing, just let the bug catch you even if it's not that funny
do the 'inner smile' - imagine that your ears are smiling, that your neck is smiling and your lungs are smiling, then the kidneys, and the bladder and the bowels, the knees and feet – the whole lot really. That's just a simple exercise taken from a model of progressive relaxation, and aimed at introducing a sense of an inner smile.
provocative therapy - it works by pointing up the absurd side of your problems. If you highlight the absurdity in your problems and start siding with the weaknesses, you will move in the opposite direction. As soon as you start to laugh at the problem, the problem is completely disempowered.
create a humour bulletin board at work with anyone pitching in
create a 'Smile File' - a scrapbook with all things smile - pictures of people smiling or laughing, cute pictures, comic cartoons, funny stories, witty anecdotes, jokes. Look at it every day, add to it, make it a habit to engage yourself with it on a regular basis.
become better at smiling by increasing your awareness on how beneficial smiling is
make an effort to look for great smiles in your daily life
join a laugh club!
Finding the things that spark your sense of humour and enjoying them often offers rewards beyond imagination. None of us can live with other people without discovering amusement in both expected and unexpected places.
Faking laughter has the same beneficial effects as the real one, so if you can't find reasons to laugh, fake it till you make it. Smile more often. If you can’t smile from heart, smile from face. Act smiling. Smiling will soon become your habit. And you won't have to fake it anymore. In case you are not at all interested in smiling then hire smiling faces and surround yourself with them.
So, why not do yourself a favour right this very minute? Throw back your head and laugh for absolutely no reason at all.
extract from Talidari's novel 'Magic Tree'
Once as John was taking a flight to somewhere, he had some time to kill at the New Delhi airport, so he snooped around to amuse himself. He noticed a cage with a cute little monkey down the hall and so he walked to it. The poor chimpanzee was being transported probably to just another cage, only bigger, but he didn’t look all that sad. Then some kids came and started to tease the poor thing. The tease soon turned into rudeness, with kids sticking their tongues out and trying to scare the poor creature, doing all sorts of aggressive gesticulations. The animal ran amok inside the small cage, as it seemed it couldn’t do much else to drive away those offensive boys, being locked up and all. It was fun for those youngsters, since they were free and knew the chimp couldn’t fight back. But they were wrong. Now comes the funny part. What the monkey did was so clever that probably no man could think of the way to fight off his opponent any better in such circumstances. His choice of ammunition turned out to be his own fecal excrement, better known as ‘poop’. The monkey put his paws under his bum and started shitting into them. Then he used the poop as grenades to get back at boys. Those shitty bombshells struck the kids, of course, and soon their shrill cries filled the hall, stealing everyone’s attention. The security dashed in to help and ended up blaming the monkey for being a monkey. They, obviously, knew nothing of the kids asking for it, as they acted worse than monkeys to start with. It’s never a pleasure to read animal traits in human behavior, even though animals are often more human than we are, don’t you think?
Only in America
Only in America……can a pizza get to your house faster than an ambulance.
Only in America……are there handicap parking places in front of a skating rink.
Only in America……do drugstores make the sick walk all the way to the back of the store to get their prescriptions while healthy people can buy cigarettes at the front.
Only in America……do people order double cheese burgers, large fries, and a diet Coke.
Only in America……do banks leave both doors to the vault open and then chain the pens to the counters.
Only in America……do people leave cars worth thousands of dollars in the driveway and put our useless junk in the garage.
Only in America……do people use answering machines to screen calls and then have call waiting so we won’t miss a call from someone we didn’t want to talk to in the first place.
Only in America……do people buy hot dogs in packages of ten and buns in packages of eight.
Only in America……do people use the word ‘politics’ to describe the process so well: Poli’ in Latin meaning ‘many’ and ‘tics’ meaning ‘bloodsucking creatures’.
Only in America……do people have drive-up ATM machines with Braille lettering.
TEACHER: Clyde , your composition on “My Dog” is exactly the same as your brother’s. Did you copy his?
CLYDE: No, teacher, it's the same dog.
TEACHER: Harold, what do you call a person who keeps on talking when people are no longer interested?
HAROLD: A teacher
• 7 days without laughter makes one weak
• Be a smile millionaire!
• Do not believe everything you think
• Hilarity Brings Clarity
• I am a manifestation of love, abundance and joy
• I don't laugh because I'm happy. I'm happy because I laugh
• I miss seeing you smile!
• I'm on the Laughter team
• Laugh and live longer!
• Laughing is my favourite exercise
• Laughter is the brush that sweeps away the cobwebs of the heart
• Laughter is the shortest distance between two people
• Let The Fun Shine!
• Light up your life. Laugh!
• Smile! It looks good on you
• Smiles matter. Laughter counts.
• Wrinkles should only indicate where smiles have been
He deserves Paradise who makes his companions laugh. - Koran
He that is of a merry heart has a continual feast. - Proverbs 15:15
The greatest prayer you could ever pray is to laugh everyday. - Ramtha
Laughter is inner jogging. - Norman Cousins
Let us not use bombs and guns to overcome the world. Let us use love and compassion. Peace begins with a smile—smile five times a day at someone you don’t really want to smile at at all—do it for peace. So let us radiate peace…and extinguish in the world and in the hearts of all men all hatred and love for power. - Mother Teresa
Laughter serves us as a bullet-proof vest, it protects us against the injuries/damages of negative emotions that would cause disease. - Talidari
And we should call every truth false which was not accompanied by at least one laugh. - Friedrich Nietzsche
"When you lose your sense of humor, you lose your footing." - One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest, McMurphy (played by Jack Nicholson in the film)
Life is like a mirror, we get the best results when we smile at it. - Anonymus
Even though this movie is 69 years old, the last speech at the end is more powerful now as it was then. This is one of the most powerful movies ever made. It is a comedy filmdirected by and starring Charlie Chaplin. It is a stirring, controversial condemnation of Hitler, fascism, antisemitism, and the Nazis. Chaplin plays two roles - an unnamed Jewish private in the army of the fictional nation of Tomainia, and Adenoid Hynkel (cf. Adolf Hitler, Chaplin in a double role), the ruthless dictator of Tomainia, who has undertaken to persecute Jews throughout the land. Final speech of converted dictator is one of the best in history of speeches. Must see it.