The Yeungman Observer (Korea), 02.03.2009
Humor is a Way of Life
In modern times there are many things troubling university students. The YU Student Counseling Center has done research into student concerns. The results of the research shows that most students are concerned about: life after graduation (52.7%), studying (23.9%), and aptitude for their major (9.5%). Students also worry about living and family, dating, and other personal relationships. The YU Student Counseling Center often uses humor when counseling students to induce a positive mood for the students. For example Shin (23), who received counseling for a family problem, said »When I first met the counselor I was so hesitant to talk about my problems and it was a hard thing, but the counselor used humor so it was a little easier to talk about my problems. I think humor can be used to reduce stress.« Michael Titze, author of Humor Strategy, wrote that humor is used to relieve tension, reduce stress, educate, and for character formation. Humor leads to seeing problems from different angles so that they seem smaller and more manageable.

Humor can also be helpful for treating mental disorders. Reducing stress and anxiety helps reduce mental difficulties. Nowadays, experts in laughter therapy are health care specialists. Laughter therapy not only gives treatment to patients physically, psychologically, and spiritually, but also after a diagnosis of social pathology, it can help to rehabilitate their condition and rebuild their confidence. Some actual results using this therapy show reduced anxiety, depression and pain, as well as improved immune system function and learning. The humor effect is not only mental but physical. Humor can relieve tension, improve blood circulation, and produce serotonin, a hormone that produces a sense of well being.

Humor is an Element of Competitive Power in Society

The history of humor as an academic subject is short and the supply of humor in society is insufficient. At Myongji Graduate School of Humor Therapy, the purpose is to organize humor academies and to train humor specialists. Professor Jae-Sun Lee said »Humor can help people cope with hardships and adversities in life. In other words, humor can be the highest form of enlightenment. A person who is suffering through adversity can cope with life cheerfully and laugh at irony. Therefore, we must first learn how to laugh at the world instead of looking at it scornfully.«

Humor has competitive power. It has the power not only to have a positive effect mentally, but is also a basic need in society. Students have to prepare for employment and emotional stability in life. Through humor you can improve the management of your company. When you are in an interview, you can use your sense of humor to your advantage and be more memorable. Therefore you should not just try to be funny. You should develop a competitive sense of humor. Although you may have many difficulties in life, you can have a little more fun and release a lot of stress by using humor. Through humor, you can enjoy your life more wisely and with a smile.