One of the most important elements of my recovery program has to do with laughter! Laughter counters stress and minimizing stress is absolutely critical to recovering from any neurological condition, particularly parkinson’s, because it is a condition that is caused by stress, but also creates stress.
So it is a challenge! But it is essential! Laughter causes the release of feel good neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin which helps to counter the stress hormones, like adrenaline and cortisol. With enough laughter, and enough stress minimization, I believe the body will begin to heal itself by returning to homeostasis.
My day is filled with laughter breaks, mostly from watching Youtube videos. My favorites include:
- The Rick Mercer Report
- Carpool karaoke with James Corden
- The Late Show with Steven Colbert
- The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon
- Anything to do with Robin Williams
In those moments when I’m feeling stressed, when my mind is in a state of fear, I turn my focus to laughter. This may include forcing myself to belly laugh, much like they do in laughter yoga.
I also yell, HALLELUJAH, a lot! It is a great stress reliever and it also helps bring my attention into the present moment.
Say, did you hear the one about …