Being silly, fits of laughter and the joy of surprise!

I am a huge fan of laughing, it’s a healthy addiction. A sudden surprise will often send me into fits of roaring laughter. I can’t think of anything that changes my state faster than a good laugh. I guess I would like to share a few experiences of my own, but also know that sometimes, you just have to be there, so I’ll just choose the one!

I do remember a Friday, city streets are packed, swerving through people on the footpath, it’s lunch time and I’m on my way to work. I am late! I can see a colleague walking toward me. The path is packed. I am still weaving in and out, preparing to smile and say hi or something. He is walking toward me with his long grey trench coat thingy that he always wears, hunched around him like he is frozen (maybe because he is wearing shorts and actually is frozen). I was not prepared when he jumped right in front of me legs spread and so close to me, no other person could have possibly seen he was clothed, he spread his arms wide, but not far enough for others to see his top and shorts, he says nothing, covers himself up and moves on, fast! It happened all at once, bang, bang ,bang. I was silent at first but as soon as he walked away I fell into fits of cackling, it came from the solar plexus and I can’t say I saw one other person laugh or even smile at me. They looked horrified! Which of course, fed the humour of the encounter. What must these people have thought? I kept walking, it all happened so quickly.

When I think about that day, I still laugh a lot! I wonder what people thought, why they didn’t laugh. The element of surprise was powerful that day, something I didn’t expect took me to a very happy place. It wasn’t just that though. It was also the guy. We didn’t have a great friendship but we talked and our connection was real. He was a bit of joker, liked to lark about a bit, a grown man with a family and pretty handy feet for soccer (UK-football)  I still think about him and what he did that day. One moment that he chose to be daring and funny, at a time before daring and funny was trendy. It lifted my spirits and changed the way I looked at him. It also changed the way I looked at myself. The way I carried myself in the public eye and how “serious” I was becoming. I appreciated the ease of the action, that it was such a natural thing that produced so much happiness. I loved that this guy was so confident and free to be himself like that, it reminded me of me, of who I used to choose to be before I let the outside influences of my own life experience direct my behaviour. It was a little gift to remind me that its ok to laugh out loud, that its important not to take life too seriously and to always allow myself the freedom to be silly.

Gratitude, death and the power of giggling!

If there is one thing that I have absolutely learnt this year, it’s the amazing power of gratitude! For a long time now, I can honestly say that I know true gratitude. For years I have lived with a sound understanding and knowing that I have so much to be grateful for.

This year though, something else has shifted for me. I am constantly feeling that I am blessed daily and I find it so easy to appreciate how beautiful our planet is and how precious love is. So many things contribute to this state that I am constantly finding myself in. One thing that I would always highly recommend is giggling.

Laughing, allowing yourself to burst into a smile within any situation is empowering and life changing. I wonder why we choose not to laugh when we think that something is funny!

So many social settings require a certain grace and presence. We enter a conversation that seems funny to our own nature but withhold our laughter in fear of shame or judgement which belongs to the same family of guilt and fear. I wonder how many of you that read this post are courageous enough to embrace your individuality and laugh anyway, let these things be funny to you. So much seriousness everywhere, people really taking things to a whole new level of rigidness. Perhaps your ability to see things from a lighter perspective could shape the way to a great adventure! Your career could take off, your love life could find its spark again, your independence and sense of value could be improved (perhaps) all in this one action of defiance.

Funerals are a good example of our social responsibility to be respectful and mourn loss. Of course this is a personal choice. Not all of us mourn loss in the same way. At the time of death of a very dear loved one its human to feel broken. Grieving is a natural and healthy process for human existence. I totally believe this, even though its just my belief and not an educated statement. The thing is though, what if within that grieving time we could find moments to giggle for the amazing soul that has become invisible to us. That we could share laughter and love and stories to celebrate the impact that this soul had on our lives. To smile and laugh at the things that we will always treasure, to choose to focus on gratitude. To be so grateful that in our lifetime we had the immense privilege to love this soul and in turn possibly, be loved back!

Now, I am not suggesting that you rock up to the next funeral laughing or kicking back with the giggles. I am just poking you with a choice. A choice to focus on how awesome this person was. How amazing your life was because of them. A choice about focus! in that one action you can create so much change in your life, just by focussing and sharing that focus with others, you could impact on them too and before you know it, a chain of gratitude appears, shiny and sparkly and bright and there it is! Love. The emotion that will always connect you to this soul, easily and effortlessly.

So… if you are missing someone right now and you find yourself focussing on the pain and heartache of loss. Try focussing on what was funny, try focussing on how they made you laugh. There is always a giggle to be found when love exists, love and joy live hand in hand. Then focus on how grateful you are that you are blessed with these memories and this love, because as long as we are focussing on love we will receive it. We will find it and we will be surrounded by it. If you look for something hard enough, you will always find it!