“The goal is to laugh forever with someone you take serious.” – Anonymous.
Although I do spend (arguably) too much time in front of my computer watching TED Talks or flicking through a self-help book, a foolproof pick me up has always been comedy. Watching a stand up performance is like a self-care routine for me… sounds weird, right? Let me explain.
I talk a lot about self-love on this little blog of mine and I try to inject a little humour along the way too because I feel that a lot of self-help guidance is around the idea of believing in yourself and your abilities etc etc and let’s face it, there’s only so many times you can hear the same cliche phrases around the idea of you being in charge of your own happiness before it becomes a cheese fest. This casts a huge amount of judgement around the idea of self-love and I’d love to be able to change peoples opinion on this.
When I started this journey my goal was less about “loving” myself (ironic, I know, stay with me here) and more about not hating myself and comedy played a huge part in me achieving this, not to mention it’s cheaper than paying for sessions.
I could tell you some stories about bullies in school, awkward experiences and times I’ve felt like I don’t belong but
we’d be here all day, I’m sure you have a ton of stories just like them yourself. I often think back to these moments and kick myself for letting them influence the person I saw when I looked in the mirror. You see, making yourself an outsider only gives the power to someone else and if I’d learnt to not take myself so seriously, not only would the comments have hurt less, I’d have my own self-deprecating jokes as comebacks to catch them off guard and become part of the jokes instead of the butt of everyone’s.
Comedy is about perspective. When you first read a joke that takes you a while to understand it may be because you’re thinking of it literally, until you think about it a little more, read it another way and suddenly you’re snorting and giggling. This is exactly why I think laughter is at the heart of self-acceptance. Once you stop taking yourself so seriously, you’ll learn to love the person you were so quick to put down. Remember: you choose whether someone is laughing at you or with you.
Here’s to not hating ourselves! (Not as catchy of a slogan but we’re gonna roll with it)