Remember When?
Do you remember a time you felt truly happy, carefree and maybe a bit silly? Hopefully it was fairly recent and if not you might want to consider "practicing" that playful side of yourself. Dr. Andrew Weil states, “Children laugh around 400 times a day compared to only about 25 times for adults.” How amazing is that?

Some Options for Joy:
Talk to Strangers
Anyone who has spent time with me knows that I talk to just about everyone — strangers, checkout clerks, janitors, everyone. Rarely do they look at me oddly, but more often, they smile, and share their day. In our culture, we have become so private, so suspicious of people we don’t know, even our neighbors, becoming more and more isolated. Human beings need contact, exchange, a personal connection — more than “Thank you for your purchase sir, have a good day.” Ask questions, see if you can make people smile or better, laugh. What a gift. Joy multiplies — you smile, they smile and they pass the smile to someone else in their life.

Go Out and Play
Play with pets, children — non-judgmental playmates who enjoy the simplicity of your presence and don’t “want something” other than your attention and imagination. There is something liberating about the reckless abandon that comes with play, be it throwing a ball to your dog, dragging a string around for your cat to swat at or making mud-pies with a child.

Seek out Laughter
Rent funny movies, read the comics, go to a comedy club, take an art class or just buy some finger paints, try out some new activities with friends that feel a little silly, or adventurous, buy some board games and invite people over for an evening. Or just do what you enjoyed most as a kid. (Usually it is low-budget and won’t leave you hungover!)

Laugh at Yourself!
Loosen up! There is something refreshing about laughing at yourself . . . I know this from daily personal experience. Whether I am alone or in other’s company I laugh at myself a lot. Once at a restaurant, a pitcher of ice water spilled on top of a stack of menus as I stood waiting to be seated. Out of bizarre instinct I picked up the menu topped with ice and water and flung it out the patio door- as if there were a water emergency. I can’t explain why I did this as no one was in danger! Nonetheless, it was hilarious, slightly embarrassing, but funny! I laugh out loud thinking of it now.

On purpose, see what you can find to bring more joy and laughter into your day!