National Humor Month (April)

April marks the celebration of National Humor Month which was founded in 1976 by best-selling humorist Larry Wilde. It is designed to heighten public awareness on how the joy and therapeutic value of laughter can improve health, boost morale, increase communication skills and enrich the quality of one's life.

April can often be a stressful time of the year; with taxes due on the 15th it can sometimes be difficult to even force a smile. That is why it is so important during this time of year to take a minute to just laugh or tell a funny joke or story.

Important meetings, presentations or job interviews can become highly stressful. Loosening up with a couple of chuckles beforehand sharpens your concentration and pleasantly prepares you for a positive and successful approach.

Laughter has many therapeutic effects that can improve the quality of life and is currently being explored by health and medical professionals. The idea of laughing and the use of humor as a tool to lift ailing spirits is growing. Scientific research now indicates that the curative power of laughter and its ability to relieve debilitating stress and burnout may indeed be one of the great medical discoveries of our times.

There are many things that a person can do in order to laugh. Be open-minded and on the look out for humor because it exists almost everywhere, be it a funny show or movie, or just sitting and reminiscing about past events with friends.

Follow these easy steps to be on your way to defusing anxiety and frustration:

  • Take a humor break. Keep a book of jokes or cartoons handy. Ten minutes before a meeting or potentially stressful situation read some funny stories. A smile or chuckle will relax and better prepare you for a confrontation.
  • Laugh at yourself. Humor keeps you from taking yourself too seriously and makes dealing with others easier.
  • Create a funny file of your own. Find out what makes you laugh and nurture it. Gather up your favorite cartoons, comedy records, joke books, funny films or anything that will bring a smile to your face. Keeping your own humor collection provides comic relief when you need it most.

Laughter is said to be contagious, so why not help to spread some this month!

For more information regarding the information in this article please visit larrywilde.com/month.htm or visit the Laughter Arts and Sciences Foundation at www.laughterfoundation.org.

Article provided by Stephanie Monger, Intern from James Madison University working with Dana Breeding, RN Health Educator of Community Wellness at Augusta Health. To contact Dana Breeding, RN related to the information above, please call (540) 332-4988 or (540) 932-4988.