Sunday, October 10, 2010

A Laugh a Day?

Last week, I was hired to give an upbeat funny talk at the 40th birthday of a lovely lady who lives in Kansas City.

As I worked on stories for my talk, I referred to some notes I’d kept from a hilarious speaker named Jeanne Robertson, who tells stories in a Texas twang from her own life and who is so funny that, as she might put it, “I laughed so hard my water broke and I wasn’t even pregnant.”

At a workshop for members of the National Speakers Association, Jeanne encouraged us in a habit that I think everyone would benefit from --including you.

Said Jeanne: “Before you go to bed at night, think of at least one amusing experience you had that day.”

Oprah has told the world that it’s a good thing to make a daily list of our gratitudes, but how about also looking consciously at what is funny in our lives? 
Here’s why:
  • Laughter reduces stress and anxiety. Ever tried looking sad when you’re engaged in a hearty belly laugh? 
  • Humor shifts perspective. It helps us see situations in a less threatening, oh-poor-me light. 
  • A sense of humor has something in common with a suit of armor: it protects us from the slings and arrows of each day. It can be a good friend when the going gets tough. 
TRY IT FOR ONE WEEK. See if you can find one amusing episode in your life every single day. Jot it down. At the end of the week, notice how you are feeling about life in general. A bit happier and less stressed?