Ben Wood Career Advice
Rebecca Deller, a Well-being Consultant who specialises in running laughter workshops talks about morning routines, laughing with strangers and tips for managing stress.
What helps you to stay positive and energised during the day?
An early morning routine is crucial for how I start the day. My ideal is getting up between 5.30-6.00am then spending the first hour writing, practising mindfulness or going for a run. The reality though is my 6 year old having other ideas often waking up before me. So I’m learning flexibility is key, adapting to the situation and having a plan B up my sleeve. During the day I often close my eyes and take some deep breaths especially when I'm on the train or between meetings, this also helps me stay energised.
So laughter workshops, what got you interested in running those?
Curiosity actually. I once worked with a colleague who was always happy and one of the most authentic people I’ve ever met, nothing phased her or stressed her out. I later found out she practised Laughter Yoga regularly, this helped her deal with life’s challenges. I became eager to give it a try so I found a laughter yoga class in London and went along. I loved the fact that I walked into a room with a bunch of strangers, did laughter exercises with them for about 45 minutes then left. I hadn't even spoken to the group but felt a massive connection with them like I had known them for years. I knew then I wanted to share this positive experience with others so I went on to train as a Laughter Facilitator.
What impact would you say laughter has on our well-being?
As I learn more about laughter and its benefits I just want to shout about it to others. I recently did some volunteering at Acton Homeless Concern and it was there I noticed how laughter helps people cope with adversity i.e learning to laugh at yourself or finding humour in difficult situations. So you could say laughing more helps to build resilience. There are so many health benefits that it brings to our bodies especially to help manage stress. It’s difficult to be upset with someone when you are laughing with them so great for managing conflict! I also find after a good belly laugh that sleep is a lot better too.
How do you bring laughter into your own life?
I am trying not take myself too seriously these days which can be difficult especially as a working mum because I think we worry what other people think too much! Luckily my husband is a good influence, he keeps me grounded and reminds me to laugh often. If we’ve both had a difficult day we will put on a comedy or we will laugh at funny things that have happened to us, it’s a good way to switch off. I also keep a laughter diary and make a note of funny things that happen so I've got a back up if needed.
Do you have any other well-being tips to help manage stress?
Surround yourself with people you can truly be yourself with and will bring out the best in you. Exercise and get out into nature when you can to help recharge your batteries. If laughing feels like a big jump, let’s face it sometimes it’s hard to laugh if you have lots going on. Even just smiling can also bring lots of positive health benefits to your body as well as brighten up someone else’s day. So you could say everyone wins :)