Go on, get your giggle on!

24 Jun, 2015

matarikiYou’re in for some heightened wellbeing during this year’s Mental Health Foundation Matariki celebrations, when comedian Jamaine Ross lends his support.

Laughter improves your catecholamine levels (fancy word for feel good hormones). So, where you can, incorporate some into your Matariki events and activities, 20 June to 19 July.

In case you’ve missed it in the past, Matariki is the Māori name for the star cluster known as the Pleiades. Traditionally, when the star cluster appears just before dawn in the month of June, it signals the start of the Māori New Year. Matariki is celebrated with many events and activities across Aotearoa.

Keep an eye out for Matariki celebrations in your area – local newspapers and council websites are great places to start – see below. Remember to get your giggle on… if you need more convincing, here’s some benefits of laughter:

  • Depressed and suicidal older people recover more quickly when they demonstrate a sense of humour
  • Laughter burns approximately 50 calories per every 10 minutes
  • Proven pain reduction, stress reduction, immune system booster, improved blood flow, lower blood sugar levels 
  • Engagement in joyful/mirthful laughter produces brain wave frequencies similar to that of a true meditation state
  • Social component: laughing is a natural improver of cooperation and empathy between people (especially between different cultural backgrounds) and fosters enhanced communication.

Matariki events

Ka puta Matariki ka rere Whānui.
Ko te tohu tēnā o te tau e!
Matariki re-appears, Whānui starts its flight.
Being the sign of the [new] year!