“Whenever we can’t remember the last time we laughed, it’s time to do it.” — Melody Beattie
A middle-aged man once went to see a therapist a few months after his daughter’s untimely death. The therapist listened to his story with utmost patience and compassion. Once he finished, she explained to him how the grieving process usually takes time, and it might take a while for him to get comfortable with things, and feel happy and settled as he used to.
She told the man that time was the greatest healer, and there wasn’t a lot he could do to speed things up, and reduce the pain of grief.
“But there’s one thing you can definitely do,” she said. “It’s extremely important and you must start doing it right away.”
“What is that?” he asked with great curiosity.
“Always keep the law of humor at the back of your head,” she replied. “Remember to loosen up and let yourself laugh. Never forget, laughter can be a soothing medicine when things get rough and our soul goes through a turmoil.”
Laughter holds a special place in human life. It’s not just optional, it’s an absolute necessity to survive and thrive in the daily grind. Humor is a law; without it, a good life is just not possible. As Victor Hugo beautifully put it, “Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face.”
Of course, we must not laugh during inappropriate times. We don’t want to laugh at other people’s expense, and we don’t want to take the refuge of false laughter to mask our pain and sorrow. But we must definitely let ourselves go and laugh whenever the right circumstances arise.
Make sure that you make laughter a regular part of your mental and emotional diet. Because without laughter and joy, life becomes a whole lot difficult and challenging. Always keep in mind this beautiful quote by William James: “We don’t laugh because we’re happy, we are happy because we laugh.”