A podcast, a tree and a curb

May 19, 2019

When was the last time you had a good laugh … at yourself. For me it happens nearly every day. Just last week while walking and searching my phone for a podcast, I ran into a tree and then tripped off the curb. I hope the person driving by had as good a laugh as I did!

When delivering his eulogy for former President George H.W. Bush, former Wyoming Sen. Alan Simpson said, “Humor is a universal solvent against the abrasive elements of life.”

The ability to laugh at ourselves along with others is not only fun, it can momentarily free us from our troubles and sometimes help us to take life a bit less seriously.

When taking on a new journey, such as beginning a new health and fitness program, you will get tripped up and, just as I did with my podcast tripping, you just have to laugh it off.

For example, when trying a Zumba class for the first time, you find yourself continually going to your left when everyone is going right and you continue running into your neighbor on your left, don’t be embarrassed, laugh.

When we are embarrassed, we tend to draw inside ourselves to avoid further embarrassment and the fear of what others are thinking; all of which may give reason to give in all together.

When you laugh at yourself in your Zumba class, you lighten the moment and you will begin dropping your guard and maybe get a kick out of your lack of rhythm. On a side note, I laugh a lot in Zumba.

When we have serious challenges in our lives, it can be very difficult to find humor in our circumstances, but there are usually some moments to break free. Fortunately, I have been blessed to have very few trials to overcome, but when I have there was always something to laugh about and find relief for a moment.

A little over two years ago I had a seizure and ever since I mix up my words. I regularly have mix-ups saying something like “hotdog” when I mean “bicycle.” But there have been times that were quite embarrassing where the words were a bit more colorful than what I meant to say, yet I chose to laugh.

If I were to become self-conscious of my verbal mishaps, it may cause me to speak less to avoid what I perceive as judgment from others. But I choose to laugh and it invites others to laugh with me.

Whether it is something as goofy as a lack of rhythm in a dance class, finding a podcast and tripping off a curb or as serious as a life-changing medical diagnosis, embrace your opportunities to laugh at yourself and feel the freedom, even for only a dinosaur — oh, wait, that should be moment…

Sherrie Hebert is a certified personal trainer and Pilates mat and equipment instructor at her studio, Performance Pilates, and Gold’s Gym. You may contact her at 208-317-5685 or sherriehebert@gmail.com and visit her Facebook page, Performance Pilates.

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