I have the ability to view life through the lens of funny gifted to me by my parents. My father was purposefully funny crafting a story with a punch line; my mother was organically funny telling everyday stories of mishaps that made her laugh through a squealing snort. I then got great pleasure from telling my own comedic stories because I saw what it did for others and I loved the way it made me feel.
Laughter has the magical ability to shed light on a dark situation, remind you of your humility and deliver you joy. As time transforms you, however, you realize it has an even greater purpose. Laughter has the ability to bring you to the present moment. Like a powerful yoga pose or a meditation, you cannot entertain worry or angst when you are laughing. You are 100% in the present moment.
Something magical happens when people come together as one in laughter. At the end of April, I attended a comedy show headlining James Mullinger who performed to a massive audience at Harbour Station along with other regional talents. I watched thousands of people join in unison as we laughed. We were laughing together because we could relate. In those moments, we were connected as one. Laughter connects.
Most recently I listened to an interview with Norman Lear, who created and produced many popular shows in the 70's and 80's, describe how he would stand behind a live studio audience as they watched a show being taped. He witnessed how they would come out of their seats doubling over in laughter then slowly lean back into their seats releasing it. The audience members moved together unison as if performing a ritual. Lear said he realized in that moment, "When we laugh together, we are one."
Laughter is a great gift of presence and connection. Laugh hard. Laugh often.
What would developing your sense of humour do for you?