You’ve heard the saying….laughter is the best medicine.
Last Sunday six people came over for Easter dinner. This tiny group included a good friend I’ve known for 25 years who is nearly finished going through chemo, and a beautiful young woman who was experiencing some physical pain from a recent operation & lengthy in-and-out of the hospital stay. One of the greatest compliments someone can say is “I’m in pain but I laughed so much I forgot all about it” (the complete opposite of “I laughed so hard it hurt”)…which made me question can laughter act as therapy? It can.
Of course you’d have to be non-stop funny to forget about pain all together but bursts of laughter here and there can really help. The credit for all this laughter belongs to my chemo going friend. She’s BIG, she’s BOLD & you BETTER WATCH OUT! I think she’ll recover very well. With her attitude and a few killer wigs – she won’t let anything or anyone stand in her way. Some people are just entertaining by nature.
I think this holds true for smiling (the beginning of laughter) and even faking happiness (which includes smiling) at trying times in your life. Even laughing at yourself is therapeutic in a funny kind of way. So when you encounter all those brooding mopey faced people on the streets just give them a big smile (because you can’t really laugh at a stranger) and watch what happens.
Here are a some of my favourite quotes on the subject:
The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter. – Mark Twain
Laughter is not at all a bad beginning for a friendship, and it is far the best ending for one. – Oscar Wilde
A sense of humor… is needed armor. Joy in one’s heart and some laughter on one’s lips is a sign that the person down deep has a pretty good grasp of life. – Hugh Sidey
You can turn painful situations around through laughter. If you can find humor in anything, even poverty, you can survive it. – Bill Cosby
A smile is very disarming