Ways to Stop Laughing at Inappropriate Times

I was attending a conference today when my overactive sense of humor got the better of me and I could not repress the giggles. I probably could have controlled my mirth but a friend, sitting next to me, also had the case of the giggles. What made us lose it? It was really quite silly. The workshop presenter had one of those laughs that is indescribable but if you hear it, it makes you laugh. Her laugh sounded loud and barking and odd. That laugh should not be conducted in public but thankfully, this person is comfortable in her own skin.

I tried to control my giggles and did what I usually do saying to myself “hurt puppies, hurt puppies, hurt puppies.” This did not work because my friend was still shaking in amusement. So, in my brilliance, I decided to use my iPad to look on the web for ways to stop laughing at inappropriate times. My search led me to the wikiHow: How to Stop Laughing When You Laugh at Inappropriate Times

Unfortunately the ideas on the wiki made me laugh all the more. Suggestions such as try pinching yourself or try forcing as much air as possible from your lungs or open your mouth wide and let the laughter out silently without smiling. How are these ideas supposed to help? My favorite suggestion was to use reverse psychology on yourself. Huh? I can’t even use normal psychology on myself.

These suggestions were followed by pretend to pick your teeth or bite your tongue and pull your cheeks back. Are you serious? I finally had to resort to reading real news and wasn’t that a quick way to bring the laughter to a halt.

According to wikipedia children laugh 300 times a day compared to adults who laugh about 20 times a day. I find these statistics sad. I am all for seriousness, but laughter and smiling are an important part of healthy living. How do we find the balance?

My dad was a big proponent of humor and the power of laughter. He coined the phrase ‘humor makes us human’. Laughter and joy are essential to living. While we need to respect others, we need to let our laughter and joy bubble to the surface. The workshop presenter today did an incredible job. The information was fantastic and by sharing her laughter with us we were all able to engage completely in her presentation. Thank you!


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