Teambuilding Through Laughter Yoga
Laughter is a great connector of people. It is said that "People who laugh together work together” Laughter is a positive energy and is infectious. Not only laughter, in fact all emotions are infectious. For example, if the boss is serious and in a bad mood, the whole atmosphere in the office becomes serious and everyone has a real ‘bad day’. The new science of emotions has revealed astonishing facts about human communication. A groundbreaking discovery shows that the human brain is equipped with special nerve cells called "Mirror Neurons". They mirror our reactions and behavior on to the people with whom we interact. This behavior takes place at the subconscious level but can be studied visually during a one on one social contact.
If the person we are with, experiences emotional or physical pain, not only do we feel the pain or stress or happiness, our body also releases a similar cocktail of chemicals as their body does. This is very important for teambuilding. For example, if a group of members working together share the same emotions, their bodies will also have similar physiological changes.
Mood State – LY Kicks Start Good Feelings for Good Teamwork
The mood of people and their state of mind plays a vital role in teambuilding. If all the team members are in high spirits, they can lift the spirit of a few who might be feeling low. The reason for this emotional resonance is the fact all human beings are sensitive to the emotions of other people. Laughter is a powerful emotion and can be used to bring people together and work as a team. The unique thing about laughing without a reason and Laughter Yoga is that laughter is unconditional and is done only as a physical exercise. There are no judgments. We do not laugh at something or make fun of others. It is therefore an ideal concept for constructive team building.
Laughter boosting is another effective method which uses unconditional laughter to prepare for stressful occasions. It is a great way to overcome shyness and fear of speaking. This can promote working together without feeling diffident and insecure. It raises one’s ability to interact and connect with other people – all of which is essential for building a good team.
Emotional Balance And Performance Of The Team
Suppressing one’s feelings can create an emotional imbalance which can lead to depression, anger and frustration. It is comparatively easier to manage physical and mental stress, but very difficult to handle emotional stress, which could be due to bad relationships at home or at the workplace.
Laughter Yoga is a unique method that helps to release physical, mental and emotional stress. It is a quick and a simple catharsis to release pent-up feelings and emotions, thus bringing about a sense of well being. It is purely a physical exercise along with breathing exercises. It is not a mental phenomenon, making it easy for anyone to practice. It has no barriers of language, age, culture or background. It is a universal emotion that helps to spread happiness.
Laughter Yoga teaches one to understand others and balance one’s own emotions. As it diffuses stress and generates peace and harmony in the mind which leads to improved thinking and better creativity with a defined focus. The team goals become clear and accepted by everyone. People learn to complement and balance each other instead of building conflicts.
My worldwide experience with laughter clubs taught me that appreciation works like magic to motivate and inspire people. If you regularly appreciate and acknowledge the work done by the new team members, their motivation levels go up and their potential output increases. At our clubs, we have designated Mondays as Appreciation Day. We also have a special exercise called appreciation laughter which reminds the members to appreciate others.
‘Do not correct people, connect with them’. This is the secret behind any good leader. Appreciation is a positive reinforcement that has worked wonders. It is any day better than criticism that only demoralizes and affects productivity. A good leader is the one, who can produce more leaders than followers. To help build my team of dedicated leaders, I appreciated them profusely and acknowledged their contribution to the world.
I was generous in sharing the profits and giving them the benefits. I gave them a sense of belonging. An impression that they were not working for me, but that we were all working together for a common vision of bringing good health, happiness and world peace through laughter.
Teambuilding At The Body Level
According to the science of NLP (Neuro - linguistic programming) people connect better with those who are similar to them in nature and character. The most important uniting factor in Laughter Yoga clubs is laughing and breathing together. Though every member differs in their thinking and mindsets, laughter creates a commonality that makes them laugh and breathe in the same way. Synchronizing the breathing helps to connect both at the body and mind level. People learn to share their joys and sorrows together.
Laughter Brings Generosity and Giving Attitude
Laughter helps to develop a positive mental attitude, openness and generosity. People move from self-centeredness to a giving attitude. This attitude goes a long way to build a great team. Conflicting personalities and interests can lead to dominance and feelings of supremacy that is detrimental to team building. Laughter promotes a strong union between those who laugh together resulting in family-like bonds – essential for a good team. It enhances leadership qualities and creates an atmosphere of openness and directness.