Join the Party and Get Happy!

Are you laughing enough?? Seriously, though, DMF is concerned for your health!  Did you know that the the average 4-year-old laughs 300 times per day and the average 40-year-old, only 4?  That’s really sad people.  It’s especially concerning considering laughter is SO good for your health!

Laughing releases our favorite little buddies, endorphins, bringing a sense of happiness and contentment to the body. Laughing boosts our immune systems by decreasing stress hormones and increasing immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies. And laughing relieves stress and relaxes the body.

We laugh a lot at DMF, for your health of course!  And why not?  Why not pair your favorite exercise (dancing!) with laughter and get a double whammy of endorphins and positive health benefits?  Our mission this month is to increase your laughing quota and get you having a bit more fun EVERY day!  We don’t underestimate the power of laughter and neither should you.  We need more laughter in our lives and we’re here to serve it up!

So come get your laughter on this week at DMF!  We can’t wait to bust a move with you.

 

This week, I wanted to share with you my dream.  My hope is that you will have some wisdom, advice, or a connection that can help me turn this dream into reality!

I’ve been in the early stages of developing DMF YOUTH, a dance-fitness after school and educational program that blends a positive, motivational dance workout with a life skills development curriculum. Our goal is to empower kids and teens by building self-esteem, confidence, and self-worth and nurture health in all aspects of their lives–physical, mental, emotional.

DMF YOUTH is not a traditional “dance-class.”  We are based in fitness and create an awesome environment for youth to get fit in a non-competitive, fun way without the pressure of having to be a perfect dancer or athlete.  Our motivational, cardio-dance and strength training workout feels more like a dance-party than a class. We  incorporate life-skills and character development into the curriculum, making this program truly unique.  We use dance and fitness as the platform for helping youth realize their ultimate potential and gain the necessary tools needed to live healthy, happy and productive lives.

Each week, we discuss and use games and exercises to delve into topics like attitude, leadership, positive self-talk, cooperation, self-control, body-image, nutrition, and standing up to peer pressure. Everywhere young kids turn, there is pressure to “be cool” and “fit in.”  DMF YOUTH helps participants shed insecurities and the need to “be” like everyone else and encourages them to tap into their own unique talents, power and potential.  To build a sense of community and help youth embrace a “give vs. get” mentality, the program culminates with a service project that participants vote on, such as hosting a Dance-Off to raise money for a charity or hosting a dance party for sick children at a local hospital.

My goal is to get the program into inner city schools and charter schools like KIPP, Promise Academy and the Young Women’s Leadership Network. There is just no fitness program (other than traditional sports) that really delves into life skills and character development that so many of today’s youth, especially under-served youth, need in their lives.

Sound interesting to you and want to know more?  Have a contact or school you think could benefit from DMF YOUTH?    Want to join me in this quest? I’ll take ALL the wisdom and awesome advice you have!  Thanks for your support!  And thank you to EVERYONE who has ALREADY so graciously helped me on this journey!!!

Those of you who know me, know that I LOVE kids.   If you don’t love kids, please don’t stop reading as this is NOT a gush fest about kiddos, but rather a reminder of how we should perhaps live our lives.

Did you know that the average 4-year-old laughs about 300 times a day and the average 40 year old only 4?  That’s pretty sad people!  Laughter and joy are natural for kids. Children LIVE in the moment and find happiness in the little things—a ladybug crawling on their hand, a dog whose tail is wagging at warp speed, a funny face an adult makes, the wind on their face!  Laughter often ensues.

But somewhere along the way of growing into “mature” humans, we start pushing down that child-like wonder and appreciation of the magic around us.  I know we have pressure at work and home, bills to pay, and important “adult rolls” to play, but that doesn’t mean we can’t try to see the world around us through the eyes of a child.  One of the coolest things in the world is to see a child’s face when he or she experiences something for the first time.  What would happen if we tried to be a more open, appreciative, and excited about the awesomeness around us? What if we tried to go through our day as if we were experiencing things for the first time?  It could be as simple as appreciating how amazing your food looks (I’m a bit of “ooh and awe” person myself), or noticing how cute and funny squirrels look when they eat a nut.  That was random, but boy it makes me laugh every time I see those little squirrel hands work.

PLUS, laughter is AWESOME for your health! Research shows that laughter reduces levels of stress hormones such as cortisol, epinephrine, and dopamine and  increases health-enhancing hormones (such as endorphins), neurotransmitters, and infection-fighting antibodies. We know the importance of laughter at DMF which is why we ALWAYS try to include a song that or dance move that will make you giggle.  It’s science people!  We need it!

So this week, DMF challenges you to increase your laugh quota and try to find more joy in the little things.  You can start by watching this adorable laughing baby (Click on link below).  You’ve probably seen it before, but watch it again and get those endorphins flowing!

Can’t wait to bust a move with you this week!

Baby Laughing Video

 


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