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  • Writer's pictureshiv kumar

How can humour help with stress management?

Stress has always been a big part of human life right from the time our ancestors had to hunt for food and fight for survival.

In today’s times, we may not have to kill an animal for our next meal or fight a mountain lion to stay alive but stress continues to play havoc with our lives. The rise in technology over the past couple of decades has added a new dimension to stress. The small device in the palm of your hand, in particular, has ensured that you can’t ever switch off from the sources of stress, right?

Much as you might like, it’s impossible to eliminate all sources of stress from your life. In fact, eliminating some sources of stress might be the last thing you want! For instance, some people might feel that their children give them a lot of stress, but they wouldn’t want this source of stress to disappear, would they?

It's best to accept that stress is inevitable and, sometimes, even essential. But you could find ways to get better at handling stress.

One of the ways of tackling everyday stressors is through humour.

Think of the shock absorbers in a vehicle. They help in absorbing or dampening the shock impulse created by the bumps on the road while driving. On the road of life, humour can be your shock absorber. A sense of humour can build resilience to stress and improve your overall physical, mental, and emotional health.

Research suggests that laughter can reduce stress and enhance your overall quality of life. Laughter therapy has been proven to reduce the physiological markers of stress and is often suggested by medical professionals in conjunction with conventional treatment.

When you’re in the middle of a stressful situation, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. But if you can take a step back and view your situation as an objective observer, you can find something funny about it. 

This is called reframing—and psychology has shown that it works!

How about having a "most annoying boss" contest with your friends? This way, you might actually start looking forward to instances where your boss annoys you so you win the contest!😁 

What if you started counting how many times the same frustrating event happened to you? "I was cut off in traffic five times today—that’s one more than yesterday."

Reframing works well for predictable or repetitive annoying situations that are outside your control. In this way, you view them within a silly framework rather than letting these situations upset you.

Smiling is an antidote to stress, but guess what? It doesn’t even have to be a genuine smile! Even a fake or forced smile causes your body to release feel-good chemicals known as endorphins. Isn’t that great?😊

If you’ve had a particularly stressful day at work, there’s nothing like returning home and watching comedy on the telly, right? A few laughs can make you feel a lot better.

If laughter has so many benefits, why deprive yourself? Go ahead and make humour your ally in the battle against stress and laugh your way to a healthier and better life!

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