On the last blog, we posted an overview of the health benefits of laughter. The idea that laughter can be the best medicine has been backed up by science and for me, it falls into that category of ‘tried and true’. Humor has always been a huge part of my life. It’s the way I connect with people, new friends and old, and it’s also been the coping skill that has helped me get through living with multiple chronic illnesses, including hemophilia, and now, living through COVID. COVID-19 has challenged us in so many ways. We’ve been stuck at home, stuck inside, disconnected, and if there is anything I think we need more of right now, it’s some good belly laughs!
I am thankful for having laughter in my life. As I’ve grown older, I realize that even beyond helping me through the pain and discomfort, it’s helped me connect more deeply with others, and I’ve seen how joy and laughter have helped to build our bleeding disorders community. At any given event, there are always people with smiles on their faces connecting (and sometimes) rolling with laughter. I can’t wait until we can be together in person again!
Laughter is the shortest distance between two people. ~ Victor Borge
Until then, I wanted to share some of the ways that I (and others) have been able to bring joy and laughter into their lives. Many of them are pretty simple and right under your nose!
- Don’t be afraid to laugh!! This one is the most important. Some many people are too often embarrassed to laugh. It is important to let your guard down and simply enjoy the company you are with.
- Find funny people! Know someone who always makes you laugh? If you need a lift, reach out and spend time with funny friends!
- Tell stories about the past with friends and family. We all have stories to share!
- Head to YouTube and find a funny clip from one of your favorite shows. Repeat as necessary!!! (Or just watch a comedy on Netflix – either way, get in some good laughs!)
- Find a funny podcast, listen, and laugh!
- Keep it simple! Try to see a situation with the eyes of a child and find the humor in a situation. What can seem so serious to us, is often actually very funny!
- Try something new with your partner or family. Now this one is more challenging than the others. You have to be able to laugh at YOURSELF as well as the situation. I know for me there is nothing funnier than getting your kids to laugh with you as you try to impersonate one of their favorite television characters. (Typically, I don’t do the best impersonations…I don’t think America’s Got Talent will be calling any time soon.)
- Finally, just smile! Smiling leads to laughter. Have you ever tried to get through a conversation with someone where you are trying to smile the whole time? Those forced smiles, when used for the powers of good, can be quite comical!!