If theres anything at all Ive learned in my 50 plus (plus, plus) years on this planet, its that life is not easy. I received that unwelcome message loud and clear quite early on, when my Mother died shortly after my eleventh birthday. Lifes not easy, my Father told me, as we sat together, crying on the couch.
Years later, Dad delivered the same cheery memo as I bemoaned my boyfriend breaking up with me.Life is not easy, he said. No s**t !
Each of us goes through plenty of challenges in our lifetime. Sometimes theyre as seemingly unbearable as death or traumatic as a serious illness. And sometimes, its as simple as having your feelings hurt by your spouse or a friend. But how we learn to manage that stress and disappointment, the negative feelings, and the sadness is important for over-all health and longevity. Not to mention, for just plain everyday feelings of well-being.
For the centenarians of the Sardinian Blue Zone, life is filled with a daily dose of laughter. Like the old saying goes, laughter is the best medicine. It not only makes you feel better in the moment, the effect lasts for hours and its a valuable component to a healthy lifestyle.
One particularly miserable day in January 2015, as my entire family was faced with a slew of challenging situations, I was feeling emotionally compromised. I tried to overcome my own negative outlook by expressing my feelings of appreciation in my gratitude journal. Not good enough. I still needed to find my happy place.
I decided to read, and picked up the biography that I had recently started. Not a humorous book by any stretch, but I figured hey, this guys life sucked way more than mine so what the hell. As luck would have it, the chapter I was beginning was actually an incredibly funny section of the book. I mean, laugh out loud hilarious. And the more I laughed, the better I felt. Keep in mind, I was practically living in New Jersey at the time, for Gods sake. That can bring anybody down. But instead, I began to feel better. Not only that, I felt better hours later! Laughter really is good for what ails ya!
Try seeking out humor each and every day. You may be surprised how good a vigorous belly laugh makes you feel.