Have a Little Fun

There’s nothing like waking up from a restful sleep with no responsibilities but to play and have fun. If there’s one thing I loved as a kid, it was having fun. If there is something I love as an adult, it’s still having fun. But as we get older, we tend to stop laughing and we don’t seem to have as much fun as we did when we were younger. One of the reasons might be that we are trying to juggle family and work responsibilities. That’s why every now and then in your family life, you need to make an effort to be silly and plan some more fun.

As an example, I recall a time when my children were younger and I bought some of those fake buck teeth. They cost less than a dollar. I remember sticking them in my mouth at a restaurant and embarrassing my children like crazy. As I ordered my food with these silly-looking fake teeth in my mouth, my children kept saying, “Dad, you can’t do that!” while they laughed their heads off. Recently, I surprised my wife by hiding in a closet and scaring her when she opened the door. Now, don’t get mad at me about that because that’s just the sort of thing I do every now and then, and Jane appreciates it.

I want to tell you that those kinds of moments create laughter in the home, and every home needs the sound of laughter. Think about the last time that happened in your family life. Can you remember the last time everybody cried because they were doubled over in laughter? I believe families need to learn to laugh more. I say “learn” because families forget how to enjoy each other. They get so caught up in the stress of life that there is rarely time to just relax and have fun! When there’s been a lot of pain or a lot of hurt in a family, that’s all the more reason to find time to laugh. Those reasons may be a little harder to come by, but you can find them.

A good, hearty laugh can help relieve your physical tension and stress. It can leave muscles relaxed for up to 45 minutes afterward. Laughter can also boost your immune system. It decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, thus improving your resistance to disease.

For those of us who are not runners, we can now get the same results as runners by just laughing. Laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. Endorphins promote an overall sense of well-being and can even temporarily relieve pain.

So, if you are trying to figure out how to engage your family, start laughing and see what happens.