It began with the Singapore Kindness Movement’s initiative of bringing kindness to the heartland in May this year. Now, the citizens of the Bukit Purmei Zone A Resident’s Committee (BPARC) have come up with a way to inspire fellow residents into doing kind acts – through Laughter Yoga. Conducted by a trained Laughter Yoga teacher, Mr Benedict Lim, it is free for all to join the 30 minute session every morning. The pioneer session drew a crowd of about 30 residents, which increased to an average of 50 people 6 days into the session.
BPARC had proposed using laughter in an effort to inspire kindness by making use of the benefits of laughter. From promoting positive emotions, to connecting people from all walks of life, laughing together not only brings happiness to oneself, but also to others. The positive emotions from laughter is not to be undermined, as feeling good inclines people to build positive relationships with others, which includes being kind to them as well.
Acts of kindness can be as simple as giving a smile, being polite, or giving someone a sincere compliment. Kindness is an act of love, and it is a way to show others that you care about them. Hence, through positive relationships promoted by laughter and positive emotions, BPARC hopes that people will also be kinder to others, just by feeling happy.
Laughter Yoga sessions with Mr. Lim are not simply about laughing, as he would also include a little “kindness challenge” during the session. Residents would be invited to think about kind acts that they have seen or done, creating an awareness about kindness. They are also encouraged to do at least one kind act a day.
“It is important for us to show appreciation and gratitude to others as it helps us to be more mindful of the good things that happen in our lives, no matter how small they may be,” says Mr. Lim, “and it is when we acknowledge the kindness bestowed to us, that we are able to do kind acts unto others.”
When sharing the kind acts during the daily sessions, these are some of the things that come up:
One of the lady’s kind acts is to be at the amphitheatre to set up the place at 6.05am for the Qi Gong Exercise at 6.25am every morning.
Another lady went around talking to cleaners as her kind act for the day because she felt that they are lonely and no one to talk to, therefore to spread some care and concern in their lives.
There’s also another gentleman who was inspired by the cleanliness in Ghim Moh estate when he went there for lunch with his wife, and wanted to pick up all the rubbish and cans along his path to keep Bukit Purmei Estate as clean as Ghim Moh.
One lady shared about her experience of kindness from her neighbour who helps to keep her laundry whenever it starts to rain. In return, her kind act is to help her neighbour keep her laundry too.
Laughter has numerous benefits to one’s health, relationships, and overall well-being. Through these free Laughter Yoga sessions, people can be happier, healthier, and kinder. Best of all, anyone can do it.
Report by Benedict Lim, CLYT, Singapore