In my acupuncture practice I laugh a lot! I laugh with my patients about life’s struggles, work scenarios and relationship fails. We also laugh about successes and politics. Laughter is an important part of how we emotionally process the world. Usually we need to digest what’s going on a bit before we can laugh about it. “Too Soon” is a phase connected to applying laughter to a situation before we have had time to get a bit of emotional space.
Many of us are currently stuck at home creating new routines and scenarios. I don’t laugh nearly as much as I do during a standard day of work. The positive effect it has on my nervous system is missing and I find myself looking for ways to laugh more in my current scenario which, doesn’t appear to be changing anytime soon. Perhaps better political leadership would help?
Here are several things I’ve found that help with laughter.
- Watch Comedy Routines: There are plenty on Netflix, youtube or whatever platform you have. There are so many comedians at lease one or two will hit you the right way. Eddie Izzard is great for me! Here are a bunch of names to try out. Wanda Sykes, Dave Chapelle, Amy Schumer, Robin Williams, Sarah Silverman, Bob Newhart, Kevin Hart, Steve Martin, Richard Pryor.
- Not Amused, Try to Laugh Anyways! Making the facial muscles assume the position of laughing will encourage you to actually laugh. There is definitely a fake it until you make it aspect of trying to laugh. Although this is awkward it is successful. Many of the stress lowers aspects of laughter will still occur even if you fake it.
- Try Smiling More: I know this also sounds absurd but if your face is already in a position to laugh it is more likely to laugh. This is according to research which means someone designed a study where participants wandered around with smiles on and they recorded how often they laughed!
- Feed Your Specific Humor: We all find different things funny. Spend a few minutes thinking of what you find funny and if there are ways you can create more of that in your life. If there are friends you specifically associate with humor find a time to chat with them and get that part of you fulfilled.