When my husband and I were engaged my mother hosted an engagement reception for us. People my parents had known for years showed up, ate food, wished us well, and left, in the way most receptions happen. On a table by the door were slips of paper for every guest to put a piece of marital advice for us and place it in a jar. Most of the advice written out were things I have heard my whole life:
“Don’t go to bed angry” “Communicate with each other” “Be physically affectionate” “Admit when you’re wrong.”
One piece of advice I wish had been written out was “laugh together every day.”
The physical benefits of laughter are well known – laughter can improve health, and lengthen life expectancy in terminally ill patients – but how does laughter aid relationships?
Neuroscientist Robert Provine studied just that, and published his findings in his book Laughter: A Scientific Investigation.
What he found was that, beyond just diffusing tense situations and reducing anger and anxiety, laughter establishes (or restores) a positive emotional connection between ... Read more »