Having fun is a good thing. It’s something that we all need to focus on a lot more in our lives to ensure that not only is our mental health the best it can be but our physical health remains as healthy as possible too. Laughing with your friends, going for a run, reading a great book, making art, doing sports; whatever it is that you find fun is good for you, so you should keep on doing it! Below are some of the most important health benefits of having fun.
When we get stressed, our body releases a lot of the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol is useful in small doses; it’s what gives us our fight or flight defense mode, allowing us to run away if we need to and protect ourselves. However, too much cortisol can leave us
potentially unwell – it can cause weight gain, cause problems with the immune system, and raise blood pressure. None of that is particularly good for us, so it’s best to limit the amount of cortisol we have in our bodies. We can do that by having fun which leads to lower amounts and a happier feeling all around.
Better Coping Skills
Everyone is going to get stressed at some point in their lives, and you can’t have fun 24 hours a day, seven days a week – there will be times when you get upset and angry, when you’re grieving and more. However, taking the time to try to continue your usual activities when you are feeling stressed can help you to keep calmer than you would otherwise do. Being able to reduce your stress levels to some extent means that you have a better ability to cope with whatever life throws at you.
Having more energy is something that a lot of people wish for; they work too hard and don’t get enough sleep, they’re struggling with stress, they’re in pain, and because of all this they feel fatigued and sluggish. It’s not a good feeling, and it doesn’t help anyone. Having fun (even if you don’t feel like it) will boost your energy levels. You’ll feel less pain, you’ll be more wide awake, and this means you’ll be more productive. The more productive you are, the better you’ll feel, and so it goes on. It all stems from going out of your way to do something enjoyable. It could be a workout, writing a letter, knitting, it doesn’t matter as long as your brain and body love whatever it is you’re doing.
The more fun you have, the more serotonin you produce in your body. Serotonin is called the happy hormone, and it is a direct opposite of cortisol. Serotonin regulates our sleep patterns, makes our memories better, keeps our body temperatures in check, and even regulates our mood. By having fun and doing activities that you enjoy with your friends, you can naturally raise your serotonin levels and combat your cortisol levels at the same time. For a new activity to take up with your friends, you could get back to nature with an adventure assault course, or test your brainpower by checking out a panic room. Indianapolis Escape Room is a good place to start for inspiration for the perfect activity to do with a group of friends to increase those serotonin levels.
Less stress and more fun will mean less cortisol and more serotonin as we’ve mentioned. Another bonus of this shift in hormonal balance is that your memory and concentration will be improved as well. When we’re not having much fun, it can feel like we’re running on autopilot, and it’s so easy to forget even the most important things let alone the smaller ones. When that happens, it can make us feel even more stressed, which in turn makes the entire situation much worse. It’s important to take a few minutes each day to enjoy yourself. If you can’t make it out to a class, then at least take some ‘me time’ to relax and unwind. It can truly help you in your day to day life, and it will make you healthier too.
Having fun often means making meaningful connections with other people. It’s one of the main benefits, in fact, because making friends is good for our health too. Having that sense of connection, of being needed and useful, in fact, is a powerful health boost for anyone. You may prefer to stay indoors on your own and not interact with people. However, breaking out of that introverted mode to be with other people will help you, both physically and mentally. Remember all those times you didn’t want to go out, but did and were glad? It’s because you felt happy, healthy, and good about yourself, and that was down to the people you were spending your time with. Being with a group is a fundamental part of being human.
Going out and having fun is pretty tiring, especially if it is a physical activity that you’re taking part in. Even if you stay in and do something by yourself, you’ll still be taxing your brain somewhat. That means that sleep should come more easily, and last for longer, which is great for your health. Sleeping more soundly is good for weight loss, stress levels, general aches and pains, and can even reduce heart disease, the development of diabetes, and some cancers. Sleep is how our body re-sets itself, and if you’re not getting enough, you’ll never be quite repaired come the morning. Sleep well, and you’ll feel so much better for it.
Build Up To Better
When you want to lose weight, you don’t (ideally) massively reduce your food intake or go on a ‘fad diet.’ Why? Because these things are not sustainable, and although you may well lose a lot of weight quickly, as soon as you go back to your usual eating habits you’ll put it all back on again. Therefore it needs to be done more slowly so that you can keep at it. The same is true for having fun and reducing stress. If you make going out and enjoying yourself (or staying in and enjoying yourself) a habit, it will be easier to get into the happy feeling, and you’ll be able to sustain it for much longer. This means you will build up your serotonin levels, your ability to deal with stress, your long-term memory and much more.
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