Monday, June 4, 2012

30 Days of Joy: Day 4-Laugh

Have you ever had the giggles?  It doesn't happen very often to us when we are adults.  I think you find giggling most often in young girls.  I know that there have been times when I had a fit of giggles when I was younger.  There is something about being young that goes hand-in-hand with laughter.

Parents record their baby's first laugh, and they tickle them to get them to laugh.
In fact, the toy, Tickle Me Elmo, was very popular at one time to the point of inciting riots where normally sane adults were grabbing the toys from one another.  Why was it such a big deal?  Children's laughter?

They say that laughter is contagious; so why don't we laugh very much once we become adults?  Is it because we have forgotten how to laugh?  Are we too cool or self-conscious to laugh?  Much too serious as adults?

 I think it's just that we don't take the time to laugh anymore.  My husband loves to impart puns as we go through our day.  Our sons will tell you that we usually call them groaners.  They really are clever, but we've heard them all before.  As a result, we don't really laugh-we smirk or groan.  That's sad.  One of the things that attracted me to him was that he made me laugh.

My husband is thrilled when he has new people to share his jokes with.  Our daughter-in-law has a greater appreciation for his sense of humor.  I'm sure that our granddaughter will happily enjoy laughing with her grandpa as she becomes old enough to understand his humor.

I think most of us like to laugh.  The fact that there are so many sitcoms on television certainly speaks to that form of entertainment.  Comedy clubs are still around, cartoons still exist, blooper reels are a success, and the comics in the newspaper are still favorites.  I know that in our house we usually like action/ fantasy movies, but there are times when we seek out a comedy just because we want to laugh.  I happen to like intelligent comedy; I think that's why I don't watch sitcoms anymore.  However, I used to love MASH and Cheers when I was younger.  Maybe my tastes have changed, or maybe the writing is just different than it used to be.
A Day Without Laughter Is a Day Wasted.-Charlie Chaplin
No matter what form of comedy you like, it's time for us to take back laughter. If you are looking for something to start with, I wholeheartedly recommend watching the Ellen DeGeneres show.  Any day is fun, but today is Classic Joke Monday!  The jokes may be old, but it will still get a chuckle. Ellen makes me laugh every time I watch her show, and I leave feeling happy.   When I was working, I used to tape her show and watch it at night.  Now that I am retired, I have the benefit of watching it during the day.  My granddaughter also likes to watch Ellen.  She dances with Ellen and smiles a lot while it's on television.  It's just feel-good programming!

Did you know that January 24th is Global Belly Laugh Day?  Or that there are health benefits to laughter?  Psychology Today actually has an article that you might want to read on The Science of Laughter.  I was amazed that females laugh more than males, and that males are more likely to be comedians than females.  I guess that makes sense.  When I think about my family, both my grandfather and my dad were great joke tellers.  I, on the other hand, am terrible at telling a joke.  The article also talks about the social nature of laughter.  We laugh more easily when we are with others.  What would be a better way to start a Circle of Joy?   Here's one to share with you to get you started:

That's the hard-drive; not the mouse!
It doesn't really matter what you find funny, just don't forget to laugh and experience the joy!  So, where's your laugh opportunity?

Have you found your joy today?

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