Action 29

I use and enjoy positive humor. I can laugh at myself and keep things in perspective. I can laugh hard with someone else, since shared laughter is a way to make and keep friends. I can tell my story with a “twist” at the end. As the author Mark Twain observed: “I have had many catastrophes in my life, some of which actually happened.”

Useful Information

Resilient individuals tend to laugh a lot which lubricates their brain, as well as their relationships. Laughter triggers “feel good” chemicals in the brain. Humor lessens stress levels, enhances mood, supports immune function and healing, and strengthens coping abilities.

Find something to laugh about each day. Ask your partner, “What happened today that made you laugh?” Individuals with a sense of humor are more fun to be with and this leads to good times together, better relationships and more resilience. (See the website as a way to tend your mind and refresh your spirit.)

Quotable Quotes

“When I got to Iraq my commanding officer gave each of us a marble to carry with us. He told us, ‘Iraq is dangerous. Don’t lose your marbles.’ I still have that marble with me now that I am home. It is a reminder.” (See “A Marble in the Sand”)

“When POWs were asked what the secret of their endurance was, they often mentioned joking, sharing funny observations and laughing as effective coping methods—specifically, joking about the enemy. Such jokes and laughter helped to create and maintain a sense of solidarity and companionship.”

Action 30