About Heather Joy

For about 30 years, I’ve worked in media and corporate communications with the constant imperative of deadlines ruling my life. Everything has had to be done, now, this instant, and it has had to be right. Add to that raising my two, now young adult, children on my own from their preschool days, and more recently, the care of my frail aged mum and there have been plenty of ‘stressy’ moments.

A few years ago, Melbourne master networker and business coach Bev Brough sought my professional writing skills for a book she was publishing. Now we’re talking: health for mature women was packed with diverse wellness topics, among them a chapter on laughter yoga. I’d never heard of such a thing. I was intrigued. I phoned the ‘chuckling executive officer’ Phillipa Challis, sure I was onto a good magazine story. An hour later, the call ended with a challenge: to actually give laughter yoga a go.

In short, curiosity got the better of me; I did attend a class in my Australian hometown of Brisbane — in a public park no less!—and I really enjoyed it. Yes, I was self-conscious (initially). Yes, it seemed like a crazy thing to do. Most importantly, yes, I felt different after just one class! I felt vibrant, energetic, positive – goooood!

The weekend laughter sessions became a regular fixture in an already busy schedule. I liken them to recharging my phone battery. I learnt simple exercises that I could do to ‘stress less’ when the pressure was on at work or at home. I laughed, more, anyway.

In 2014, I took the next step. I trained to become a laughter yoga leader in the tradition of Dr Madan Kataria. I became officially ‘certified’ (not certifiable!).

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With that training, I was able to lead community-based group laughter sessions as part of Brisbane Laughter Club.

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In March 2016, I travelled to Bangalore, India, to train as a laughter yoga teacher under the tutelage of the regimen’s founder, Dr Kataria.

Now I offer a range of professional laughter yoga services  under the business name, The Happydemic, as well as running free laughter club sessions at suburban The Gap in Brisbane on Saturday mornings, and occasionally at New Farm Park too. I love seeing the connectedness laughter yoga brings to my community.

My News page provides insights, news and titbits about laughter yoga, joyfulness, and gratitude and how they interconnect for wellbeing.

When I’m not facilitating laughter yoga or writing and editing, I enjoy cooking up a storm for family and friends, creating vibrant coloured glass mosaics and exploring the world around me.

And yes, Heather Joy is the name my parents gave me!

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Our promise!

Spreading wellness through laughter, seriously!

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Fact!

It has been scientifically proven that 20 minutes of laughter reaps real physiological benefits.

Testimonial

"Heather Joy’s laughter yoga session was the most fun I’ve had at work in a long time! It was great to do it as a group – a team building exercise in itself. I definitely got a dose of therapy and endorphins, a workout for my lungs, and came away with a new tool to de-stress at the end of a day."

- Suzie Christiansen, CEO, Anglicare Central Queensland, October 2016

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