Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Laugh As Much As Possible

I once received an instant message from a friend and co-worker in another city.  It read “I’d like to place an order for some Zen”.  She went on to explain that she was coming un-hinged at work and wondered, “What would Michael do”?  I didn’t tell her that I would probably go outside and scream.  What I did was make her laugh.  I told her that laughter is part of Zen.  My co-workers and I often joke throughout the workday and make one another laugh.  It never ceases to amaze me how good laughter is for you.  It can certainly lighten the mood and re-energize you when the demands of the day make you feel frazzled.  I don’t want to be in a workplace where everyone is serious all the time and there is never any laughter.  One of my personal goals is to feel joyful about life.  This is very challenging at times.  Life is hard and there are always bad things happening that can depress you.  The Zen of laughter can make life seem sweet and not so difficult.  Whatever our differences are as people, we can be unified in our shared laughter.  Psychological studies have shown that frequent laughter is good for us physically as well as for our overall well-being.  Occasionally people ask me how I have managed to stay married for over 40 years.  I would say that laughter has been a major reason.  My wife and I are about 98% total opposites but we laugh a lot.  Admittedly, a lot of our laughter is based on our mutual disrespect for people who take themselves too seriously, for all things pretentious, and for society’s absurdities.  My advice for all you sourpusses and overly serious people out there is to chill out and laugh.  Life is too short to walk around with a frown on your face all the time.  Lighten up!  No one ever died from laughter and being light hearted.    

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