Go ahead, just laugh.

It is good for you, from the proclamations of the followers of laughing yoga to the smiles on the faces of patients visited by clowns or dogs at the hospital, laughter seems to add a great deal to peoples lives.

I, like so many others, love to laugh. I even took a comedy writing class years ago and it was the best thing that I could have done to help me to improve my public speaking abilities.

As the New Year is on us, just a little advice to all of you. Laugh. Make time to laugh. Find things that are humorous to you and read them or watch them or remember them. It does not matter what it is - just laugh.

I think that Caddyshack is hysterical, and though I have seen it countless times, I still laugh wne I watch it. Or, the other day I was watching a commercial and there was a shot clip of Charlie Chaplin putting forks into rolls and pretending to dance with them as his feet – probably one of the earliest recorded funny moments in film that brought a smile to my face.

To this day when I get with my high school buddies I always bring headache medicine with me because we start to tell stories and we end up laughing so hard that I get small headaches, but they are so worth it to me to relive all those great memories and I end up feeling so great after seeing them.

So, remember who made you laugh, remember to laugh, and remember to help make others laugh as well. Have a fun New Year everyone.

About the Author

Patrick B. McGrath, Ph.D.

Patrick McGrath, Ph.D., is the Director of the Alexian Brothers Behavioral Health Hospital's Center for Anxiety and OCD Program and president of Anxiety Centers of Illinois.

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