Humor Coach: Hone Your Funny Bone (1)


Humor is an incredibly important social skill.  If you want to get along, get laughs. Funny takes are like soft, rubber bumpers around the sharp edges of life. 

Robert Weider said, ‘Once you have them by the funny bone, their hearts and minds will follow.’

A sense of humor is a terrific personality trait to have.  Every popular person I know laughs a lot, teases, and makes fun.  When you choose to look for the laughs, you affirm life.

Bishop Fulton J. Sheen said laughter is the juxtaposition of two ideas.  He told a story on his popular television show about a little girl and her family having dinner with the local priest.  The priest asked the child, “what are you going to do when you get big like your mommy?”  “Diet,” she responded.

Humor Coach: Hone Your Funny Bone (1)Marriage is two funny things staying together for the laughs trying to remember out whatever made them decide it would be a good idea for them to live together.  A family is a group of funny things vying for dibs on the smallest room in the house.

Work is a group of funny characters functioning without a plot that tends to thicken in the middle.  The church is an entertaining mix of the strange, the straight, and the spiritual all trying to figure out why some ancient homeless guy loved them enough to leave them a legacy.

I belong to The Society for the Ladies Who Laugh Out Loud, and founder Katherine Lyons Bridge gave me a message bookmark that said, it takes 13 muscles to smile and 50 muscles to frown.  Stay young.  Practice turning the corners up. I have also graduated from the University of Light Hearts in 1994 with my degree in Laughing. On the Official U.L.H. Alumni Association membership card, university president, Daphne G. Triphon, put the following Three Star Daily Pledge:

***  I pledge to pursue laughter in my daily life.
***  I pledge to have a light heart daily just for the health of it.
***  I pledge to be grateful for one new thing daily

Willing to think about taking the Three Star Daily Pledge? Then, of course, you will want to do the Exercise below!

The What Makes You Laugh? Exercise:
Have you ever thought about what kind of a sense of humor you have?  I invite you to poke around and check out the part humor plays in your life.

  1. Write down your most amusing personal story.
  2. Write down what happened the last time you laughed at yourself.
  3. When was the last time you had a full belly laugh? Why did what happened strike you as so funny?
  4. Who are you with when you laugh the most? What is it about the two of you together that makes for so much fun?
  5. What is your preferred humor:  short, one-liners, slapstick, visual, funny stories, satire, situation comedy?
  6. Who thinks you’re funny? Why? (If you don’t know, ask them.)
  7. What is your most hilarious family story?
  8. What could you promise yourself to do today to add more laughter to your life?
  9. Are you willing to do it at home and at work?  If not, why not?

The average 6-year old laughs 300 times a day and the average adult laughs 7-8 times.  Do you laugh 7-8 times each day?  Do you ever have days when you laugh 300 times?  For optimum health, an adult should laugh 40-60 times a day.  I believe the more you laugh, the happier you feel.  E-mail is quickly catching on as an easy way to send funny stories to groups of people you think would enjoy them.  I get them from my youngest daughter, my cousin in Pennsylvania, my friend in Canada.  I send and get cartoons and funny stories by regular mail.

The best humor is situational, creative, clean humor that creates fun without putting anyone down, humor that heals instead of hurts.

In Buffalo, New York, at a business meeting in a large restaurant, about fifteen of us found ourselves waiting and waiting for our order to come.  By the time our wait approached an hour, one of the women showed us how she could balance a spoon on her nose.  Before long most of us had learned and someone got the idea to march around the restaurant with spoons and forks hanging from our noses, cheeks, and chins.  Our teacher had a knife stuck to her forehead and a spoon dangling from one ear.  When we got back to our table, the party at the next table asked, do you folks come here often?  One of the guys asked why they wanted to know.  They said; we’ve had so much fun watching and listening to your group have such a great time, we want to be here the next time you come back!

My Aunt Peggy is an excellent example of someone who has laughed her way through life.  Whenever I think of her, I can hear her laughter.  When people are with her, pretty soon everyone is laughing.  At seventy-five, she still works.  Her boss says; She is always pleasant, congenial, never complains about anything.  You’d never know she ever had a trouble in her world.  And her laugh rings through this office and just brightens your day.

All people have pain in their lives, but whether they choose to suffer through it or smile through it is an option. Leo Buscaglia said, when you’re at the end of your rope, tie a knot at the end of it and swing.

More to come…stay tuned for the next Hone Your Funny Bone!

  1. Avatar of Andy Bachman
    Andy Bachman says

    Thank you, Barbara for this great advice.
    We should remind ourselves to laugh a lot.

  2. Avatar of MF
    MF says

    Well-written piece.
    Enjoyed it very much.
    We need to introduce more laughter in our lives – healthy.

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