Have you noticed that this upcoming TV season has many new and returning comedy series?  Why is that?

Undoubtedly, when there are tough times, we turn to comedy for relief in some obvious and some more unusual ways.

A Distraction

Comedy can be a wonderful distraction from the problems we encounter daily. It can allow a mind shift that is like opening a door and breathing fresh air.  It releases endorphins and relaxes tense muscles.  Giggling and smiling can alter our facial expressions and enliven our personalities. Given the extreme weather and earthquakes, political divides and fear of the future, there’s no wonder that comedy shows are back in full force this year.

Laughing when we take life too seriously

Comedy gives us a chance to look at ourselves and realize we sometimes take life too seriously. This is particularly true as time goes on after a stressful event.  I remember preparing to travel to a friend’s cabin for the weekend. Our puppy was car sick and this was a three hour journey. We consulted a vet who recommended children’s motion sickness pills an hour before leaving. With the departure time drawing close, my husband went to get the pills but he mistakenly returned with suppositories! His sudden disappearance didn’t alleviate the stressful situation for me. I finally put on rubber gloves and, after wading through poodle curls, I placed the pill in the right “compartment” at her tail end. She was obviously shaken and ran over to the corner of the garden, where she crouched down and promptly pooped the pill back out. Once again I took out the blister pack and after capturing the puppy poodle, the pill was eventually inserted!  Of course, this scene seems hilarious now and it taught me to be a little less stressed and realize that sometimes the end justifies the means! A stressful scene turned into a funny memory.

Relieving Stress

When we are sad, depressed or stressed, it’s easy to fall into the trap of not feeling that laughter is appropriate for the circumstances.  During one particularly sad time, my friend showed up with four Supersoaker water blasters. I told her I couldn’t possibly play around during such a serious time in my life… I was met with water between the eyes. Game on!  Sometimes you just need a break from the grip of reality.

Remembering You’re Human

You always remember the time when you let a giggle or a laugh slip out when you were in a deep depression or a serious, sad situation. Sometimes stressful or miserable events can go on for months, particularly when a close relative or friend has fallen ill or died. When you let your guard down and laugh at a TV show, a video, a book, a friend, a joke, you can feel guilty. Don’t!  We’re all human and have a range of emotions. The word “emotion” comes from the two Latin words “e” and “movere”: “out of” and “move”. These words mean unexpected and unplanned. Embrace change and notice how it feels because you can’t always focus on the bad in life. Tell yourself that you deserve some happy times too.


Humor and laughter are essential. You can’t let misery drag on and change the person you are becoming “flat” and unfeeling. After all, we have a wide range of emotions that make us HUMAN and our laughter, fun and happy memories are what keep us sane. Life is about living – with all it’s ups and downs



COPING WITH STRESS: Laughter can be the best medicine
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