It is known that Laughter is the best medicine, but are you aware of how laughter can affect your well-being and work environment and improve the quality of work output as an individual or as a group. A lot of corporate companies have, of late, been looking for ways for the welfare of their staff to reduce stress, increase levels of productivity, and create happier environments. The pandemic has further fueled the need to get people relaxed and be in their state of wellness. In this quest, we came across Archana Rao, India’s best-known female laughter yoga expert, coach & therapist. She manages her organization, Laughter Yoga India, after getting trained under the able smiles of Dr. Madan Kataria, the proponent of Laughter therapy worldwide.Â She is a leading Women Entrepreneur who spearheads these sessions for Corporates and Social organizations in the Indian subcontinent.
In conversation with Archana, we asked her to explain a bit more about Laughter yoga and how the process work. She started her reply with a ”Ho Ho Ha Ha Ha”, the signature salutation and then told us about her passion & love for creating this ‘unique entrepreneurial model of laughter yoga’ for corporate and social transformation. She uses various tools and techniques like games, music, & dance that blend her experiences with the joy of laughter. The entire Laughter yoga session delivers a holistic approach of laughter therapy, meditation and relaxation sessions to create value and effectiveness. When asked what kind of yoga is in laughter, she mentioned, “There is a lot of breathing involved to exercise the lungs, clapping to exercise the palms, laughing to exercise the face and moving around to spread laughter, thereby exercising the whole body. And this is why the therapy is called laughter yoga.” Medically it has been proven that laughter releases endorphins which instantly improve the body’s metabolism and feel-good factor, thereby complementing the work behaviours and outputs.
Further to understanding the process’s challenges, she mentioned, “Making people laugh without jokes and comedy is not easy. People are conditioned that way.” She further said, “Every group I deliver the session is unique in its own aspect depending on the audience profiles, background, content and the right context.” The initial resistance in the first few minutes of the session is overcome through the unique methodology followed and the participation exercises. She says that these same people complete the sessions with a happy, peaceful, jovial mindset of laughter that makes the programs effective and makes my day. Archana has worked with many large companies, some repeatedly, and the results have been astonishing.
We went on to ask her about the other work she does and found her passionately say that, “I also work for social causes wherein I do events with young children at schools, colleges and universities, with the LGBT community, with cancer patients and survivors, with elderly people needing support etc. All of this for social causes and no fees, just out of the passion to support communities to experience the joy of laughter”. She mentioned her life mission is to “keep creating magic and miracles, always be in gratitude, Look for inspiration within and Never give up”. She ended the conversation by emphasizing her motto.