15 Jun
Pros of Seeing the Humor in Life
Cons of Seeing the Humor in Life
Makes unpleasant situations better
Not everything is funny
People enjoy associating with you moreSome feel as though they are being laughed at
Laughter is good for your healthIt can be annoying
Seeing the humor makes for some great storiesNot everyone will enjoy your humor
Releases tensionIt can be tempting to block out the humor found in life

How was I supposed to know you HAVE to use clothes pins when hanging your clothes out to dry? I was a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and had never hung clothes to dry outside an apartment window. As I draped the wet clothing over the line (four stories up), I decided that clothes pins wouldn't be necessary. The sun was shining, and there was no wind.

I returned home to find my clothes on my downstairs neighbors' balconies and inside a gated backyard. I laughed so hard! What on earth had I been thinking? As I laughed, I found to my surprise, that my colleague didn't see anything funny about the situation. I was dumbfounded and had to give her reaction a lot of thought. How could one survive without laughing their way through life? Were there pros and cons to having a sense of humor?

Pros of Seeing the Humor in Life

  1. Seeing life through the lens of humor makes unpleasant situations better.  Elder Wirthlin (an apostle for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints)  recounted the following: "I remember when one of our daughters went on a blind date. She was all dressed up and waiting for her date to arrive when the doorbell rang. In walked a man who seemed a little old, but she tried to be polite. She introduced him to me and my wife and the other children; then she put on her coat and went out the door. We watched as she got into the car, but the car didn’t move. Eventually our daughter got out of the car and, red faced, ran back into the house. The man that she thought was her blind date had actually come to pick up another of our daughters who had agreed to be a babysitter for him and his wife. We all had a good laugh over that. In fact, we couldn’t stop laughing. Later, when our daughter’s real blind date showed up, I couldn’t come out to meet him because I was still in the kitchen laughing. Now, I realize that our daughter could have felt humiliated and embarrassed. But she laughed with us, and as a result, we still laugh about it today."
  2. People that find humor in life are fun to be around.  There was a foul smell that came from my college kitchen sink. Finally, I decided I would take matters into my hands and fix our sink. I removed the pipe (that was used to drain the water,)to find tons of rotted food stored inside.  I showed my roommate the problem, as I proceeded to empty the contents into the trash. The pipe was still nasty so I begin to rinse it out in the kitchen sink. It took me a several seconds before I realized my error. My roommate and I laughed so hard that we were nearly in tears. It was so good that my roommate saw the humor, even though the mess I created. 
  3. Laughter is good for your health.  In the article, Laugh and be ThankfulBy Patrick J. Skerrett (Former Executive Editor, Harvard Health) states: "From brain scans and other tests, neuroscientists are compiling evidence that laughter triggers chemical responses in the brain that lead to feelings of pleasure and a sense of well-being. Laughter also appears to go beyond the belly and the brain—arteries respond to it in healthy ways that could improve blood flow and long-term health. (I’m talking about “mirthful” laughter here, the kind sparked by a funny story or a Billy Crystal routine. Sarcastic or other kinds of unfriendly or hostile laughter are a different story.)"
  4. You can choose to laugh or cry, which will it be? Honestly, I can't explain this any better than this quote by Marjorie Pay Hinckley, “The only way to get through life is to laugh your way through it. You either have to laugh or cry. I prefer to laugh. Crying gives me a headache.”
  5. The curveballs of life make for funny, epic, stories. Have you ever accidentally got a whiff of a bear spray can, that unintentionally went off? To say it was a little bit terrifying is an understatement.  Have you ever walked in the wrong direction for over 30 minutes? It was embarrassing. Have you ever accidentally tasered yourself? Believe me, it isn't a fun experience.   I had thought of going on a run in the dark, then thought better of it and decided to drive to the gym. I placed my flashlight taser in my oversized pocket and proceeded to go to the gym.  Somehow the lock on my taser (that was in my coat pocket) unlocked and my leg was tasered. I laughed and still laugh about the stupid thing I unintentionally do. Since I can see the humor, other people have been able to laugh along with me. 
  6. Seeing the humor will make you a better parent. My heart aches for the children whose parents can't see the humor. Yes, your kid will probably unroll the whole roll of toilet paper. Yes, your child may decide to make 7 gallons of pancake batter. Yes, your child may empty the whole bottle of bubble bath solution into the tub. Parents that can see the humor of the situation laugh and correct. Those who can't see the humor get angry, and shame. 
  7. Realizing that life is funny, allows one to release the tension of those around them.  Awkward, uncomfortable situations are everywhere. I love it when someone can point out the humor. This allows me to get passed the awkwardness, and move on with my day. 

Cons of Seeing the Humor in Life

  1. Not everything is funny! Seeing the humor in life can go too far. Wholesome humor can be replaced by hurtful, vulgar, and inappropriate humor . 
  2. Some people can feel that you are laughing at them. People do stupid things all the time. However, some people can't see the humor in their mistakes. These people will not comprehend that they are being laughed with, not laughed at. 
  3. Finding humor in everything can be annoying. Some things aren't funny, yet some people can do nothing but think that everything is funny. 
  4. Not everyone wants to think life is funny. Not everyone will laugh with you and then can be super awkward. 
  5.  It can be tempting to block out the humor in situations. I worked in the school system, which was full of such situations. One of my little kindergarten friends always interrupted the teachers to have his shoes tied. It was inconvenient but needed to be done. Then in the final stretch of the school year, I caught him. This typically quiet and well-behaved kid was untying his shoes so he could have someone help tie them!!!

"Our goal is to help the world make decisions with a list of Pros and Cons. We invite all to add to our lists to help others make the most educated decision possible. We are all in this world together to help each other and learn from what others have learned from their lives journey."     - Pros and Cons Team
Written by: Kristen

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