Of course, laughing during a stressful time like this can seem a bit strange. Or even hard to do. But we shouldn’t be afraid of laughing during a crisis. It’s for the best because it helps reduce stress and anxiety.
“Huddling around the radio, so to speak, and listening to the news reports just tends to amplify the scariness of what’s going on,” director of the University of Colorado Boulder’s Humor Research Lab Dr. Peter McGraw pointed out.
“And a bit of comedy—whether it be through your Instagram feed, through a Netflix comedy special, or calling up your friend who’s pretty good at making jokes in the face of tragedy—is not only a good way to distract yourself from what’s going on, but it’s also a good way to delight yourself,” McGraw said.
He explained that most of us are feeling a lot of uncertainty in our futures because of Covid-19. “One of the challenges that people are having is that the government is asking them to ‘socially distance’ themselves and that can make life a little bit difficult because one of the great ways to cope with fear and uncertainty is to lean on people that you care about and to communicate with others and to have a strong social support network.”
Since going outside and socializing is now out of the question, we’re mostly left with online streaming services, YouTube, and social media to get our fix of humor. However, McGraw warns us that spending too much time on social media right now might be a mistake because “your social media feed is a mess” due to the coronavirus. That’s why he suggests watching professional comedy specials, funny movies, and reading hilarious books.
“I would say turn your phone off, tune in and take a little bit of a break. You certainly deserve it.”