BLOG 64–The joy of humor

In the last couple of posts I have written about things like death. Time to change focus, what is the opposite of death and sadness, laughter is great medicine. But, the following just one more bad>>

We do not need a house that is as large as the house she has now, so we decided to buy a mobile home that has two bedrooms for us to move into, which would work better for us and Tina’s mom (whose name is Marion, by the way.

For a few days I was using my van to take Tina’s mom’s stuff to be recycled and/or given away. She had a house full of stuff that has been gathered for the 95 years. Actually, she had gotten the house from her parents many years ago, she was even born in the living room.

The included photo is of Tina’s mom and me. (by the way, what do you think of the ever growing beard?)

I emptied the van of all I had in there for traveling, easier to have an empty van to move stuff. I had put most things from the van behind a bush in the yard; hard to see, I trusted it would be alright.

And, a few times, I had left the van unlocked while we took Tina’s car to do some things. And, we had put various things out at the street for people to take who could use the stuff.

November 22–Tina and I noticed we were missing some things.
Tina’s mom had hired some who was doing the work at the house; I could tell that it was not him who took my stuff.

The house is on a hill with no sidewalks or places to park, someone did though. It was a stranger off the street who got into my van and stuff, taking my personal file box with papers and photos from my past, along with some important papers, such as owner papers for the van.

Also missing were an assortment of kitchen tools, one of which was a 4 prong wooden fork for stirring and serving spaghetti. This was a one of a kind tool that my mom passed on to me, most have just three prongs.

I have too much trust that people will do the right thing, yikes.

What hurts me the most is these idiots who took the file box will just look through what is in it (my history) and simply throw everything in the trash. Yet, through this I maintain my joy of life.

The day after this happened I saw a story on the news about a big fire in Philadelphia in which people lost everything—all clothes, photos, papers—everything. This made it not so bad that I lost my file cabinet.

Enough of that, back to the humor.

Our plan is to move from this large house into a two bedroom mobile home, temporarily. We want to set things up so that someone can easily move in at stay for a few days or a week while we are out gallivanting at wilderness areas in the mountains.

Tina and I have joked about getting a small trailer that we could pull behind the van for Marion to live in and we would just hit the road again with her. But, just a joke?

Not joking now, the benefits of laughter will make you feel better and get also can help you get some pain free sleep. You see, laughter helps the pituitary gland release its own pain-suppressing opiates.

And, bring joy to your life can;
· Lower blood pressure

· Give a workout to the diaphragm, abdominal, respiratory, facial, leg and back muscles.

· Increase your vascular blood flow and oxygenation of your blood.

· Reduce certain stress hormones such as cortisal and adrenaline.

· Increase the response of tumor and disease killing cells such as Gamma-interferon and T cells.

· Defend against respiratory infections—even reducing the frequency of cold—by immunoglobulin in saliva.

· Increase your memory and learning.

· Improve upon your alertness and creativity.

Humor and creativity work hand-in-hand by creating relationships between two disconnected items through developing these skills, which will help you engage your whole brain.

Remember, humor words quickly (with an open mind.) Less than a half-second after exposure to something funny, you will find an electrical wave will move through the higher brain functions of the cerebral cortex.

With comedy, this is what happens in your brain:
· The left hemisphere analyzes the words and structures of the joke

· The right hemisphere “gets” the joke.

· The visual sensory area of the occipital lobe creates images.

· The limbic (emotional) system makes you happier.

· Your motor sections of the brain make you smile and/or laugh.

Bringing joy and laughter to your life can make your whole world blossom. It is a choice that your mind makes every second of your life, to find joy or find pain. In any situation you can still find happiness.

To bring humor to your life you must develop creativeness in your thinking. I am hoping the following will help you get there.
===========================================
Beyond Your Potential

The Comeback Kit, From Coma to Comedy

BOOK THREE—FINDING SUCCESS!

A Series of Books to Change Your Life

By Kit Summers

Chapter 22–Creativity and Risk

“Be brave enough to live life
creatively. The creative place
where no one else has ever been.”
Alan Alda

As a performer and juggler, I constantly had to be creative to develop new juggling patterns, and being live on stage, I had to learn new and exciting routines for my performance. Also, most of my life I have been self-employed, an endeavor that requires creativity and risk. I also had to tap into my creativity to find ways to recover after my accident. Then, of course, for this book and the other books in the Beyond Your Potential series, I had to develop more creativity to write words for you that will help to advance your life.

You Are Creative
Being creative is taking a risk, trying something new, or finding new ways to do old things. Think back to when you were young and free to use your mind how you wanted to. As a child, you probably saw a bright future for yourself with all the things you wanted to accomplish once you grew up. Your mind was always open to trying new things. In order to regain your natural creativity, learn to think like a child again. Free yourself of the unproductive and dull norm of adulthood that says you can’t try new things or that creativity isn’t needed. So many adults lose their childhood fun, play, and creativeness and “turn” into adults.

To Make Creativity
Our brains have tremendous potential for creativity, analysis, and reasoning at any age. There are many paths to creativity. It could be as simple as combining two existing things in a new and different way. It could be taking something that is always done a certain way and discovering a new and better way to do it. It’s simply a matter of taking the time to think about what you are doing instead of just going through the motions. The only thing that you and I need to do to release our creativity is to be whole brain thinkers.

Be Open
Being a juggling performer, I had no choice but to be creative. To learn or create new juggling feats, I needed to be open to trying new ways to throw, new ways to catch, and new props to throw and catch, including fire and swords. In my professional performing days, I would try tricks that many thought impossible, but I knew that there would be a way if I was creative in my approach to learning. To make my routines interesting and engaging, I had to think in new directions and be creative enough to always have the audience guessing (and laughing.)

What If?
Imagine yourself finding a way to make a product or service even better. This is probably something you do every day. In your daily routines, I’m sure there are lots of things that frustrate you like toothpaste sticking to the sink or maybe your shoelaces constantly coming untied. Why couldn’t you be the one to solve these frustrations or even larger issues like world hunger? Imagine if the person who invented the umbrella had never taken the time to think about how to keep them self-dry when they had to run errands on a rainy day. To spark some creativity in yourself, look at something and ask yourself what if? This question can open your mind to think of other ways and new directions. You could find that new way of doing something that might help alleviate stress in your life, cure someone of a terrible illness, or more simply maybe just make you lots of money.

Push Curiosity
Studies have shown that creativity and curiosity are positively correlated with intelligence, meaning that as one increases, the other also increases. In one study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology in 2002, researchers correctly predicted that highly curious toddlers would have higher IQ’s when they were older children than toddlers with lower levels of curiosity. Researchers measured the degree of creative behavior in 1,790 three-year-old children and then measured their cognitive ability at age eleven. As they thought, the eleven year old children who had been highly curious three-year-old kids later scored twelve points higher on total IQ compared with low-stimulation seekers. They also had superior scholastic and reading abilities. There are ways to making your child more curious in life. Open up their mind and push curiosity now to provide a better life for your child later. Stimulate your kids to find their creative side.

You Can Get Smarter!
Other studies have shown that adults who are highly curious also have greater analytic aptitude, better problem solving abilities, and higher intelligence overall. Studies are showing that it is possible for you to increase your IQ over the course of your life. In the past, scientists were under the impression that the IQ you were born would be the IQ you had your whole life, but this idea has changed. This suggests that additional curiosity in your daily life is likely to make you smarter. No, you are not too old to be creative, to be curious, and to advance your life. But, you must start – NOW.

Innovate and Create
Your creativity can advance the world. Creativity and innovation drive the designing of better or more effective products, lifestyles, juggling moves, technologies, processes, services, or ideas that are available to everyone to make the world a better place. Innovation is different from invention in that innovation is an original and different way of doing things, while invention is coming up with one product or idea that is new. Creativity is the invention or origination of a new thing, or, often, this is taking a thing already designed and tweaking it in a way that adds to it, makes it better, and makes it different.

Imagination
If there is one thing that exclusively sets humans apart from all the rest of existence on earth it would be our ability to think, to be creative and to use our imaginations. Being content with routine thought patterns allows us to do the many things we need to do without having to think about them, but we must go beyond routine to make the world better for ourselves and for those who will follow after us. Use your mind, think, and discover new ways that will advance your life and, hopefully, will advance the world. At times, we have to temporarily forget what we think we know because our minds get muddled with convenient answers. We don’t take the time to think that there might be another way to go about things. Sometimes we need to take the time to rethink a situation and to break our routine patterns.

The Better Way
Creativity is more than a mind full of new ideas. Creativity is also being able to implement new ideas with thought, judgment, and selection. An innovator is constantly changing and challenging the rules, thinking in new directions and trying new ideas. There is always a better way to do most things. Use your mind to come up with new uses for old ideas and maybe even redevelop a product.

Change the Question
Sometimes, if we change the wording of a question in our own mind, we can come up with a way to solve the question in a different way. Over time, almost every advancement in business, science, technology, juggling, art, medicine, and most every other field has occurred when someone challenged the rules and tried a different approach.

Use your drops and losses to get better
Like you read before, when you drop, pick up and try again. Things may not turn-out the way you planned, but don’t get discouraged or quit. Try again, but find a new path or a new way. Failure is never the end, but only the first stepping stone to new ideas.

Combine
Creative people are people who pay attention to small ideas. These ideas, or combination of ideas, can blossom into a big breakthrough, or something that will take off. Sometimes, what you can do is take the basic idea for one situation and apply it to another. The people who have creative ideas are looking at the same things as everyone else – then they think something different from everyone else.

Learn About Everything
The key to creativity is curiosity. To increase your curiosity and creativity, don’t just be concerned with how to finish first in the rat race or how to beat the system. Be enthralled with the world around you and ask questions. The creative individual wants to know about all kinds of things, such as:
What is life and why are we here?
What happens after death?
What is the natural life of a frog?
What is the lifespan of a frog in captivity?
Is it going to rain today or just stay cloudy?
How does one juggle 5 balls?

Be that curious person. Ask questions and learn all you can about everything. Use your creative mind to put two (or three or five) ideas together to come up with something new. Successes are waiting for you, open your mind and make changes happen in your world toward the success you desire.

A Storm in the Brain
Rekindle your childhood curiosity. Remember the spark that went off in your head when you would see something that amazed you or scared you or just didn’t make sense to your inexperienced mind? Out of your curiosity will grow the desire to see ordinary things in a new way, thinking this way will open your mind. Curiosity, at its hub, is all about noticing and expanding on something that means something to us, that we find interesting, that we can latch on to personally. Once your curiosity is in gear, use the technique of brainstorming to enhance your creativity. Brainstorming is the method of writing down all the thoughts and ideas that come into your mind related to a question or problem no matter how trivial or absurd it might seem.

The Storm Continues
When brainstorming, write or type as quickly as you can without stopping to evaluate what you’ve listed so far. When you are look over what you have written, you will see that some of the ideas were silly and dumb, but many times, even silly and dumb ideas can grow into something good and productive. I used brainstorming to help me to write this book and the others in the series. I started by writing down all the ideas and words that I had and then later developed what I thought was the best material to help you.

Try Different Ways
Be flexible with the so-called rules of life. Sometimes, you will have to break out of one pattern in order to discover another one. You can be creative in just about anything that you do, even if it’s something you’ve been doing exactly the same way for twenty years be it signing your name, taking out the trash, or washing the dishes. You can transform even mundane, dull, mechanical task into fun and meaningful ones by being asking questions, brainstorming, and embracing your creativity. By trying new ways to do even simple things, your enjoyment in life will increase, and you may think of a better way to do something.

You Are Creative, Yes?
Some people are better at creating new ideas than others. Some seem to be born with a natural inclination toward creativity like artists, poets, composers, philosophers, and jugglers. Remember though that you can develop your creativity. While it may not come as easily for you as for say a painter, remember that even the natural painter will continue to develop their creativity by practicing.

See Things Differently
The analytical mind, which competes with the creative mind, is often wrong as that part of our brains is primarily guided by what has happened to us in the past and how we have interpreted prior events in our lives. There are ways, though, to actively engage the creative mind to overpower the analytical part of our brains. The knowledge that we might gain from previous experience isn’t always accurate given that our interpretations of things might not always be correct, especially interpretations we may have formed during childhood. Ideas received through the creative part of the brain are often more reliable interpretations of our outside world. When we are curious, we look at things differently, use our powers of observation more fully, and we are more likely to put away our self-image that often hinders us from seeing things the way they truly are.

Productive Work
Being creative and having a good sense of humor in your job or career can bring you many opportunities for promotion and advancement. Yet, many managers and executives seem to operate under the idea that work should be serious and they want their employees to keep their nose to the grindstone and not make changes. These managers have eliminated fun and humor from the workplace. With an atmosphere of fun and play, employees are usually able to accomplish more.

Your Fun Working Environment
Along with having a childlike attitude to spark your creativity, a fun working environment is much more productive than a routine environment. People who like where they are working are much more likely to find new and better ways of doing things that can save companies thousand and millions of dollars. If you are a manager, I encourage you to foster creativity that any of your employees may exhibit. As an employee, make the environment in which you work pleasant for you.

Take a Chance
Taking a risk requires constant confidence building. Risk takers must have confidence in their ability to bounce back and recover if things don’t go right. The thing that separates people who reach their dreams from those who don’t is that those who were able to realize their dreams took calculated risks and chances in their life. Be daring and take risks to advance your life. There is no way to succeed without exposing yourself to risk.

Curiosity to Bring on Learning
While being passionate about something obviously makes you curious to know details about it, the same holds true that you can spark interest for something that doesn’t mean anything to you at this time. The more interest you can develop for something, the more likely you are to notice it, study it, and learn about it, and thus the more appealing and significant it will become for you. This inquisitiveness is true toward people, sports, books, juggling, skills, and conversations. The more you jump into something, the more curiosity and creativity you will develop. You may become an expert in something that once never held interest for you.

You Can Do It
Encourage and nurture your curiosity which in turn will develop your creativity. The bigger your curiosity, the bigger your life can be. Curiosity, creativity, and being willing to take risks will grant you more opportunities and experiences in life that will inspire and excite you.

As a performer and juggler, I constantly had to be creative to develop new juggling patterns, and being live on stage, I had to learn new and exciting routines for my performance. Also, most of my life I have been self-employed, an endeavor that requires creativity and risk. I also had to tap into my creativity to find ways to recover after my accident. Then, of course, for this book and the other books in the Beyond Your Potential series, I had to develop more creativity to write words for you that will help to advance your life.

You Are Creative
Being creative is taking a risk, trying something new, or finding new ways to do old things. Think back to when you were young and free to use your mind how you wanted to. As a child, you probably saw a bright future for yourself with all the things you wanted to accomplish once you grew up. Your mind was always open to trying new things. In order to regain your natural creativity, learn to think like a child again. Free yourself of the unproductive and dull norm of adulthood that says you can’t try new things or that creativity isn’t needed. So many adults lose their childhood fun, play, and creativeness and “turn” into adults.

To Make Creativity
Our brains have tremendous potential for creativity, analysis, and reasoning at any age. There are many paths to creativity. It could be as simple as combining two existing things in a new and different way. It could be taking something that is always done a certain way and discovering a new and better way to do it. It’s simply a matter of taking the time to think about what you are doing instead of just going through the motions. The only thing that you and I need to do to release our creativity is to be whole brain thinkers.

Be Open
Being a juggling performer, I had no choice but to be creative. To learn or create new juggling feats, I needed to be open to trying new ways to throw, new ways to catch, and new props to throw and catch, including fire and swords. In my professional performing days, I would try tricks that many thought impossible, but I knew that there would be a way if I was creative in my approach to learning. To make my routines interesting and engaging, I had to think in new directions and be creative enough to always have the audience guessing (and laughing.)

What If?
Imagine yourself finding a way to make a product or service even better. This is probably something you do every day. In your daily routines, I’m sure there are lots of things that frustrate you like toothpaste sticking to the sink or maybe your shoelaces constantly coming untied. Why couldn’t you be the one to solve these frustrations or even larger issues like world hunger? Imagine if the person who invented the umbrella had never taken the time to think about how to keep them self-dry when they had to run errands on a rainy day. To spark some creativity in yourself, look at something and ask yourself what if? This question can open your mind to think of other ways and new directions. You could find that new way of doing something that might help alleviate stress in your life, cure someone of a terrible illness, or more simply maybe just make you lots of money.

Push Curiosity
Studies have shown that creativity and curiosity are positively correlated with intelligence, meaning that as one increases, the other also increases. In one study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology in 2002, researchers correctly predicted that highly curious toddlers would have higher IQ’s when they were older children than toddlers with lower levels of curiosity. Researchers measured the degree of creative behavior in 1,790 three-year-old children and then measured their cognitive ability at age eleven. As they thought, the eleven year old children who had been highly curious three-year-old kids later scored twelve points higher on total IQ compared with low-stimulation seekers. They also had superior scholastic and reading abilities. There are ways to making your child more curious in life. Open up their mind and push curiosity now to provide a better life for your child later. Stimulate your kids to find their creative side.

You Can Get Smarter!
Other studies have shown that adults who are highly curious also have greater analytic aptitude, better problem solving abilities, and higher intelligence overall. Studies are showing that it is possible for you to increase your IQ over the course of your life. In the past, scientists were under the impression that the IQ you were born would be the IQ you had your whole life, but this idea has changed. This suggests that additional curiosity in your daily life is likely to make you smarter. No, you are not too old to be creative, to be curious, and to advance your life. But, you must start – NOW.

Innovate and Create
Your creativity can advance the world. Creativity and innovation drive the designing of better or more effective products, lifestyles, juggling moves, technologies, processes, services, or ideas that are available to everyone to make the world a better place. Innovation is different from invention in that innovation is an original and different way of doing things, while invention is coming up with one product or idea that is new. Creativity is the invention or origination of a new thing, or, often, this is taking a thing already designed and tweaking it in a way that adds to it, makes it better, and makes it different.

Imagination
If there is one thing that exclusively sets humans apart from all the rest of existence on earth it would be our ability to think, to be creative and to use our imaginations. Being content with routine thought patterns allows us to do the many things we need to do without having to think about them, but we must go beyond routine to make the world better for ourselves and for those who will follow after us. Use your mind, think, and discover new ways that will advance your life and, hopefully, will advance the world. At times, we have to temporarily forget what we think we know because our minds get muddled with convenient answers. We don’t take the time to think that there might be another way to go about things. Sometimes we need to take the time to rethink a situation and to break our routine patterns.

The Better Way
Creativity is more than a mind full of new ideas. Creativity is also being able to implement new ideas with thought, judgment, and selection. An innovator is constantly changing and challenging the rules, thinking in new directions and trying new ideas. There is always a better way to do most things. Use your mind to come up with new uses for old ideas and maybe even redevelop a product.

Change the Question
Sometimes, if we change the wording of a question in our own mind, we can come up with a way to solve the question in a different way. Over time, almost every advancement in business, science, technology, juggling, art, medicine, and most every other field has occurred when someone challenged the rules and tried a different approach.

Use your drops and losses to get better
Like you read before, when you drop, pick up and try again. Things may not turn-out the way you planned, but don’t get discouraged or quit. Try again, but find a new path or a new way. Failure is never the end, but only the first stepping stone to new ideas.

Combine
Creative people are people who pay attention to small ideas. These ideas, or combination of ideas, can blossom into a big breakthrough, or something that will take off. Sometimes, what you can do is take the basic idea for one situation and apply it to another. The people who have creative ideas are looking at the same things as everyone else – then they think something different from everyone else.

Learn About Everything
The key to creativity is curiosity. To increase your curiosity and creativity, don’t just be concerned with how to finish first in the rat race or how to beat the system. Be enthralled with the world around you and ask questions. The creative individual wants to know about all kinds of things, such as:
What is life and why are we here?
What happens after death?
What is the natural life of a frog?
What is the lifespan of a frog in captivity?
Is it going to rain today or just stay cloudy?
How does one juggle 5 balls?
Be that curious person. Ask questions and learn all you can about everything. Use your creative mind to put two (or three or five) ideas together to come up with something new. Successes are waiting for you, open your mind and make changes happen in your world toward the success you desire.

A Storm in the Brain
Rekindle your childhood curiosity. Remember the spark that went off in your head when you would see something that amazed you or scared you or just didn’t make sense to your inexperienced mind? Out of your curiosity will grow the desire to see ordinary things in a new way, thinking this way will open your mind. Curiosity, at its hub, is all about noticing and expanding on something that means something to us, that we find interesting, that we can latch on to personally. Once your curiosity is in gear, use the technique of brainstorming to enhance your creativity. Brainstorming is the method of writing down all the thoughts and ideas that come into your mind related to a question or problem no matter how trivial or absurd it might seem.

The Storm Continues
When brainstorming, write or type as quickly as you can without stopping to evaluate what you’ve listed so far. When you are look over what you have written, you will see that some of the ideas were silly and dumb, but many times, even silly and dumb ideas can grow into something good and productive. I used brainstorming to help me to write this book and the others in the series. I started by writing down all the ideas and words that I had and then later developed what I thought was the best material to help you.

Try Different Ways
Be flexible with the so-called rules of life. Sometimes, you will have to break out of one pattern in order to discover another one. You can be creative in just about anything that you do, even if it’s something you’ve been doing exactly the same way for twenty years be it signing your name, taking out the trash, or washing the dishes. You can transform even mundane, dull, mechanical task into fun and meaningful ones by being asking questions, brainstorming, and embracing your creativity. By trying new ways to do even simple things, your enjoyment in life will increase, and you may think of a better way to do something.

You Are Creative, Yes?
Some people are better at creating new ideas than others. Some seem to be born with a natural inclination toward creativity like artists, poets, composers, philosophers, and jugglers. Remember though that you can develop your creativity. While it may not come as easily for you as for say a painter, remember that even the natural painter will continue to develop their creativity by practicing.

See Things Differently
The analytical mind, which competes with the creative mind, is often wrong as that part of our brains is primarily guided by what has happened to us in the past and how we have interpreted prior events in our lives. There are ways, though, to actively engage the creative mind to overpower the analytical part of our brains. The knowledge that we might gain from previous experience isn’t always accurate given that our interpretations of things might not always be correct, especially interpretations we may have formed during childhood. Ideas received through the creative part of the brain are often more reliable interpretations of our outside world. When we are curious, we look at things differently, use our powers of observation more fully, and we are more likely to put away our self-image that often hinders us from seeing things the way they truly are.

Productive Work
Being creative and having a good sense of humor in your job or career can bring you many opportunities for promotion and advancement. Yet, many managers and executives seem to operate under the idea that work should be serious and they want their employees to keep their nose to the grindstone and not make changes. These managers have eliminated fun and humor from the workplace. With an atmosphere of fun and play, employees are usually able to accomplish more.

Your Fun Working Environment
Along with having a childlike attitude to spark your creativity, a fun working environment is much more productive than a routine environment. People who like where they are working are much more likely to find new and better ways of doing things that can save companies thousand and millions of dollars. If you are a manager, I encourage you to foster creativity that any of your employees may exhibit. As an employee, make the environment in which you work pleasant for you.

Take a Chance
Taking a risk requires constant confidence building. Risk takers must have confidence in their ability to bounce back and recover if things don’t go right. The thing that separates people who reach their dreams from those who don’t is that those who were able to realize their dreams took calculated risks and chances in their life. Be daring and take risks to advance your life. There is no way to succeed without exposing yourself to risk.

Curiosity to Bring on Learning
While being passionate about something obviously makes you curious to know details about it, the same holds true that you can spark interest for something that doesn’t mean anything to you at this time. The more interest you can develop for something, the more likely you are to notice it, study it, and learn about it, and thus the more appealing and significant it will become for you. This inquisitiveness is true toward people, sports, books, juggling, skills, and conversations. The more you jump into something, the more curiosity and creativity you will develop. You may become an expert in something that once never held interest for you.

You Can Do It
Encourage and nurture your curiosity which in turn will develop your creativity. The bigger your curiosity, the bigger your life can be. Curiosity, creativity, and being willing to take risks will grant you more opportunities and experiences in life that will inspire and excite you.

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