Friday, October 3, 2008

Telephone Laughter

Implemented by Gaga Barnes, "Laughter Yoga on the Phone" is a unique idea that unites people in remarkable, spontaneous and hilarious sessions of healing and health.

It's easy. It's free. And it's oh so fun!

(This phone number is in Iowa, USA. There may be a toll charge by your phone company depending on your existing call plan - or absence thereof - with them.)

Laugh while listening to the latest recorded call!Dial 712.432.3903 Access Code 6071292#

Help us add more sessions! Gaga's dream is to have telephone laughter available on the clock, 24h/day, every day of the year. We're 100% behind her.
If you think you can or could help lead a session on a particular day / time beyond what is currently scheduled, please
1) click here to contact Gaga Barnes or call 760 889-6114
2) let us know the outcome of your conversation should anything manifest. We'll update this page right away. What is the value of being the best kept secret in town?

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Telephone Laughter Clubs

Telephone Conference Laughter Clubs / Laughter Buddies

In India laughter clubs are held every day thereby helping people to reap enormous health benefits as they laugh regularly. But, in the Western countries laughter clubs happen just once a week leaving many wanting for more. Realizing their need for daily laughter, I devised certain techniques and exercises that would help people to laugh all by themselves.

The new concept of Laughter Yoga Alone is inspirational for those wanting to laugh daily and experience the healing power of laughter for both mental and physical wellness. It is especially beneficial for the old and the disabled and for those who find it difficult to go to a laughter club on a daily basis.

It will also help to generate more awareness about the clubs and the tremendous heath benefits of laughter as an exercise. It will encourage more and more people to join the clubs and practice these exercises for good health and well being.

In my search for different techniques to laugh alone at home, one of the most ingenious was to have ‘Laughter Buddies' on the phone. It all started last year when Jackie Curran, a laughter teacher from Sydney, formed a telephone buddy with whom she laughed once every week. She found it extremely uplifting and energizing. The concept proved to be very beneficial as laughter leaders all over the world picked up this practice.

The American Breakthrough
I was pleasantly surprised when our laughter leader Gaga from California started a telephone conference laughter session called a ‘Bridge line', with nearly 20 - 30 people laughing every day at 9 a.m. California time for 20 minutes.
The experience was similar to being in a Laughter club. It caught on rapidly and they now have four laughter lines at 7 a.m., 8 a.m., 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Wow!! Very good very good Yeah!!!!
Anyone interested in joining the Telephone Laughter Club please call 712-432-3900 Access code is 6071292#

The Australian Laughter line
Inspired by the American success story Jackie, the laughter lawyer from Sydney wasted no time in setting up the first Australian Telephone Conference Laughter Club every Monday at 6 pm.
For joining the Australian Telephone Laughter Clubs This e-mail address is being protected from spambots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it ' ); //-->">
There are 2 dial in access numbers Sydney 61 2 82 46 72 10 and 1800 692 663 After dialling they need to enter the PIN number which changes from time to time.. so anyone wanting to call needs to register at the enquiry form on my web site. Lawyers Laugh line calls take place at 9 am and 6 pm Sydney time on both Mondays and Wednesdays every week.

Thank you both Jackie and Gaga and other laughter professors of California. You have created history and shown a new direction to get more and more people laughing on a regular basis. This will help to generate more awareness about the benefits of laughter.
We want more and more readers to take the initiative to start with these telephone laughter clubs in other parts of the world. Is anybody listening?

Laughter is still the best medicine!

Lotte laughs on the phone!
Laughter is still the best medicine!
The St Albans Laughter Club are sending their unique form of therapy down the line with a new venture.
The credit crunch, financial crisis, violent crime, anger management – it seems that all there ever is these days is bad news, and anybody would be forgiven for feeling a bit miserable.
Well, the St Albans Laughter Club claim to have the best remedy, and the clue is in the title!
Following the success of their monthly laughter sessions, the club are now sending chuckles down the line with the launch of the Telephone Laughter Club.

Every weekday morning at 7.00am you can dial into a conference call where you can laugh along with others in an alternative therapy that will really set you up for the day!

Laughter Clubs were started in India in 1995 by Dr Madan Kataria, who was doing research into the health benefits of laughter.
Lotte Mikkelsen set up her Laughter Club in St Albans in 2004 after seeing the success of similar clubs in her native Denmark, where they have about 250 clubs all over the country.

A laid back affair.
Now, every second Sunday of the month, in a quiet residential street in Bricket Wood, giggle devotees gather to just laugh, in exercises and meditations guided by Lotte, in sessions that are completely free of charge! The idea is that the laughter is de-stressing, and as a result people become more creative and productive and are better able to deal with the challenges of every day life.

It has been so popular that Lotte has now decided to take it further so that people can laugh on a more regular basis.
“The reason for starting the Telephone Laughter Club is that the laughter club is only once a month and to get all the benefits on an on-going basis you really want to do this every day” explained Lotte.

“With the monthly Laughter Club we meet in person and go through certain laughter exercises. In the telephone laughter club it’s free laughter straight away - and it’s only five minutes!
“It costs 5p per minute so that’s about £1.50 a week” she added.
“And I think it’s definitely worth it because the benefits you gain from it are unbelievable.
“It gives you this boost, you feel great, you feel relaxed and you feel that you can cope with anything.”

Lotte explained that the benefits of laughter are that it relaxes you, boosts your creativity and strengthens your muscles. But how does this work?
“It reduces your stress levels because when you’re stressed your cortisol stress hormone level is really, really high” Lotte revealed.
“When we laugh we release endorphins which suppress the cortisol, and that’s why we feel relaxed.

“It doesn’t make the problems go away of course” she added, “because they are still going to be there, but you are much more capable of actually dealing with the problems because you can sit back and take a look at them from a completely different perspective.”

Many people are now buying into this idea and as a result, Lotte now runs laughter workshops for companies and organisations to de-stress their employees and promote team-building.
The concept of laughing for no reason is also said to heighten creativity because you are using the side of the brain that is used for this. Lotte explained how this worked.

“When Laughter Clubs started in 1995, they started laughing by telling jokes” she said.
“But the thing about telling jokes is that it engages the left side of the brain which deals with logic and judging and you decide whether it’s funny or not. And that’s one of the reasons that it didn’t work that well at first because people were thinking about whether to laugh or not.
“So they had to come up with a completely different concept and came up with laughing for no reason. And by doing that you engage the right side of the brain.

Tears of laughter, honest!
“This is one of the reasons why we just start laughing on the phone. When I phone into the Telephone Laughter Club I just start laughing straight away instead of saying good morning or anything. I just start laughing because it’s just engaging the right side of the brain.”

And relaxation and creativity are not the only positive results of laughing. According to Lotte, when we laugh we are much more social, and just because her new venture means that you are laughing on your own on the phone, it doesn’t mean you are isolated.

“Because we’re on the phone we are by ourselves but we still connect with people in some way” she said.
“And it also makes you feel more up for connecting with people during the day. I can certainly recommend it.”
And then there are the physical benefits too, as Lotte revealed.
“I read an article where it said that if you want to train your inner most abdomen muscles, which are the core muscles that are really, really important to keep firm, then the only way that you can do that properly is not by sit ups, it’s by having a good belly laugh” she said.
And also, according to Lotte, research shows that two minutes laughing is equivalent to 20 minutes on the rowing machine so you can replace your gym visits with laughing! Result!

In India there are about 3,500 laughter clubs where people laugh every day but Lotte admits that in the UK, if we have ten active laughter clubs we’re probably quite lucky. So why is this? Why do the British find it difficult to just laugh?

“I think that it’s a challenge to run it here in the UK but at the same time it’s a fun challenge. It takes a bit longer to get people into the idea that you can actually do this and it’s OK to look a bit silly and maybe foolish” suggested Lotte.
“Most of us have this fa├žade where we think that this is how the world sees us and we shouldn’t step outside that, and when you get into the Laughter Club, you have to break that barrier down.

“When I start dialling in [to the Telephone Laughter Club] I think to myself that this is a really, really a silly thing to do! And maybe it’s that thought that just inspires the laughter.
“I get into that frame of mind where I think it’s easy to laugh because it is really silly, but it’s a good silly thing. Silly is not just for children, it’s for everybody. We get so, so serious when we grow up and it’s about time that we got a little bit more playful! We’re much, much better at dealing with problems if we are a bit playful and have a little bit of fun.

“We build up a lot of challenges in our lives, which come up and face us and we think we can’t deal with them, so I think it’s definitely something that people should dial into. There’s room for 250 people on the conference call!”

Telephone Laughter Club

The Laughter Club International (UK) started in St. Albans in June 2004 and is as active as ever.
From 15th September we expand our monthly laughter...
Every morning from Monday to Friday at 7:00am BST (GMT+1) we will be laughing on the phone.
Please dial into phone number +44 (0)844 774 2424, conference ID 807911.
Why Telephone Laughter Club?
In India laughter clubs are held every day. This helps people benefit tremendously and boost their health as they laugh regularly.

However, in the Western countries Laughter Clubs happen just once a week, or in many cases once a month, which means many people want more as they experience the health benefits.
When I started the Laughter Club in St. Albans in 2004 I had a 'laughter buddy' who I laughed with every morning at 7am to initiate the day in a great and inspiring way.

Today the US and Australia run very successful Telephone Laughter Clubs and this has inspired me to start the daily telephone laughs here in the UK. Anyone is welcome to dial into the daily laughter - no matter where in the world you are based.

The experience was similar to being in a Laughter club.
Anyone interested in joining the Telephone Laughter Club please call +44 (0)844 774 2424, conference ID 807911.
Our first Telephone Laughter is on 15th September 2008 at 7:00am BST (GMT+1). We will laugh for 15 minutes!

I look forward to laughing with you!