Hey family. Marshaun Olaniyan here, your favorite Life & Relationship Strategist. I help Christian women that are married or in long term relationships to stop feeling disconnected and unloved and shift you to feeling heard, understood and appreciated.
Why is laughter so important to have in your relationship? Research found that it is not so much about being able to make a joke in order to make your partner laugh. It has more to do with the humor that you two create as a couple that makes laughter so important to have within your relationship. Whether you are having a good time or bad time. Whether you are in an argument or you are just laughing your butt off. You should incorporate laughter as much as possible. This is where you are going to bring the connection into your life as well as break down those barriers, intense moments or an intense environment, especially when an argument ensues. We are all aware that arguments happen. They are going to happen and it is just a way for you to let things go, to readjust and to shift things specifically when you are in an argument.
Research shows that when people are in conflict situations i.e.; in an argument, laughter and humor are likely to shift you from convergent thinking, which is believing that there is only one solution, to divergent thinking, which is seeing other possibilities and ideas that could solve a particular issue. So, research shows you should be including laughter in your relationship in order to be able to shift things around. Let us talk about how to incorporate some humor, specifically during arguments.
- Improves your listening skills
You have to practice listening. Practice your listening skills ladies. This shows that you understand. Once you understand what he is trying to share with you then you inject the humor. If you do not understand what he is saying, guess what, you need to ask some more qualifying questions so you can get down to the root of what he is really trying to get you to hear and understand. This ensures there is no confusion. And again, once you understand what he is trying to say to you then inject some humor at this point in the conversation. This will give him that shock factor and shift we spoke about earlier. Now, some people say “I am not trying to laugh when the situation is tense.” or “I would not think something is funny when I am trying to be serious.” But, if you want to break up those intense feelings or that intense environment, injecting humor is going to be the way to do it. Are there other ways? Yes. But we are talking about laughter today. So, don’t be so quick to say “I don’t want to laugh when I am mad.” Is your goal to stay mad? Do you want to stay mad because you want to prove your point? Do you want to stay mad because you need to punish him? Would you like for him to feel hurt as well? What is your end goal here? Look for ways to soften the mood and the environment.
- Look for ways to inject some self-deprecating humor
The second way to inject humor, is to look for ways to inject some self-deprecating humor like, “You know, you are right. My kids would love to hear you say these things, because usually in their eyes, I am wrong.” Or something that can put a small smile or smirk on his face. Injecting humor will not always be ‘ha-ha’ funny but it does help you say “Okay, I can let down my guard” and he is in agreement with what I am saying. It may not be ‘hehe-haha’ humor but you are putting yourself on the spot, instead of saying “ugh, this is some intense stuff.” Break it up by injecting something that you can say “bad about yourself”. Bring some humor into the situation. Break down the walls and to break down his angry face as well as the tenseness during that time.
- Look for ways to humorously reframe the problem to remind you both that it could be worse.
The third thing that I want you to do is to look for ways to humorously refrain the problem to remind both of you that it could be worse. Now, what does this look like? Maybe you guys are just having an argument about washing the dishes. This is one of my weaker areas within the home so I will speak about myself. I am in the kitchen washing the dishes and I say to my husband “hey, can you help me out with the dishes?” His response is “No, I don’t want to help with the dishes. That is what you should be doing.” I respond and say “No, help me out. I always do the dishes and you never help me.”
Again, we are going back and forth about if he would help me wash the dishes. Here is the moment I would want to inject the humor. What I actually want to do is say, in a playful manner, “You know what, I bet our daughter can wash the dishes better than you because every time you wash the dishes there is food left on the plate, so I am sure she could do a better job than you anyway.” Again, it does not always have to be ‘belly-laughing humor’ but what you are trying to do is to break up that tense atmosphere. Laugh more at your relationship whether you guys are having a good time, which is always appreciated but even when you are in an argument. Is this something you are practicing in your relationship or are you of the school of thought that “I do not like anybody to make me laugh when I’m trying to be serious?”
Need help with laughing more and being more playful in your relationship or finding ways to connect deeply with your spouse? I can help. Let’s chat. Book your FREE Coaching Conversation today!
All the best,
Life & Relationship Strategist