As I was sitting down to write this blog post, I witnessed my wife speak very sternly to one of our sons. After I got over being startled (yes, she scared me, too), I sent him out of the room and walked up to my wife. I tapped her on the shoulder, asked her if she was all right, and then I did my best impression of what she looked like and what she said to our son. We both immediately bursted out in laughter!
She realized — just like I did — that her “stern” talking to him and the way that she did it was hilarious! Although she was still frustrated about what he did, she was able to step back and enjoy the comedy in it. That is one of the things that has kept our relationship strong to this day. We enjoy a lot of laughter, and sometimes one or both of us is the subject of the laughter.
This YourTango article and video touches on the importance of laughter in your relationship. You probably realize laughter is important, but how do you bring laughter into your marriage without creating a situation where one person is the butt of most jokes, privately or publicly?
Here are 5 ways to encourage laughter in your relationships:
1.) Don’t take yourself too seriously
Comedians make a living off the real-life moments they experience and witness. The reason why we laugh so hard at comedians is they share stories that we believe are true but at the same time are funny. In life we are all going to do some funny things. We have to accept this and not get too caught up. We are funny people sometimes, so we shouldn’t take ourselves too seriously. And sometimes we just have to be silly.
2.) Share experiences together
Inside jokes come from experiencing things that other people may not have experienced. This could be from watching a funny movie together, reading a book together, people watching together, or just having shared experiences. You will no doubt find some comedy in many of the things you experience together. When you find yourselves in situations that trigger those memories, you can refer to them with laughter.
3.) Laugh — even when you don’t want to
My wife gets me with this a lot. I do not enjoy being tickled at all. But I am always running around tickling my kids and wife. Every once in a while she and all the kids will attack me and relentlessly tickle me. It makes me mad, and I really don’t want to laugh, but eventually I do. I’m not sure if I laugh because I believe they’ll stop when I do, or because it is actually funny how angry I get over being tickled!
4.) Have a sense of humor to begin with!
Sometimes the joke is on you, and sometimes the joke is on your spouse. Going back to not taking yourselves too seriously, you need to be able to take a joke when you are the joke. If you are the joker, make sure you joke in love. When you do that, your spouse will know you are not trying to hurt them, and he or she can freely laugh and be okay with being the butt of a joke every once in a while.
5.) Learn what you both find funny
For the longest time I rented comedy movies that I found funny, but my wife was bored or annoyed with them. Until recently I didn’t understand the type of comedy she enjoyed. Now I do, so I can find movies, make jokes, and experience funny things that we’ll both enjoy.
If laughter is lacking in your relationship, you are missing out on a potentially great part of your relationship. Follow the five rules above, or create your own. Whatever you do make sure you add laughter to your love.
Please share a funny experience from your relationship in the comment section below.
More on relationships from Jackie: