From what I’ve been told and come to believe, laughter is the best medicine. And if that is the case, I have a very strong immune system thanks to the talent of one lady I watched on TV every Sunday evening when I was younger. She turned 90 years-old this week and had a special commemorating the event. Happy Birthday, Carol Burnett.
As I watched the show, it dawned on me that I’ve been referencing her for years in my presentations. I talk about how she was able to share the gift of humor with others, but did so in a kind-hearted way that wasn’t offensive. Her show united us around a shared positive experience, bringing out laugher and good feelings without negative undertones.
The face of humor has changed since the good ole’ days of The Carol Burnett Show. Most comedy now takes the form of sarcasm, which is humor most often made at the expense of others. And in my experience, it can often bring out poor behaviors and result in division and hurt feelings. If you don’t believe me, talk to Will Smith or Chris Rock. [Google it.]
This is not to say we should rid ourselves of sarcasm. When used in the context of strong healthy relationships, it can be fine. However, I do think we could all do a much better job of pausing before we speak and giving thought to how our words could be perceived and received. We are divided enough now in so many other ways. The last thing we need is for humor to be used in a way that pushes us farther apart.
I hope you have a great week filled with healthy laughter. And if this were a live video, you would see me tugging on my left earlobe for all the people who happen to be part of my Carol-Burnett-loving generation.