ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — A local woman is teaching the importance of humor in her travels across the world and in the Stateline. She’s done it for decades and believes humor and play are keys to improving the quality of life.
Hands on activities, smiles and lots of laughter is what you’ll find during one of Mary Kay Morrison’s Humor Quest presentations, like the one she put on at the Peterson Meadows.
As the Director and Founder of Humor Quest, Morrison provides presentations and workshop sessions internationally and locally.
“People don’t realize that it’s research based, so everything that I do is based on solid research on the benefits of humor,” says Morrison.
She’s part of something you’ve probably never heard of before, The Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor.
“Everybody has the capacity to increase the humor laughter and play in their life but it’s an intentional process,” said Morrison.
“The more fun you have in life, the more playful you can be. The more humor you can find. The less chance there is for anxiety, depression and mental health issues,” she adds.
Morrison believes it starts in the classroom with students. She educates educators on how to incorporate fun. “The brain grows most rapidly when we’re playing and having fun,” says Morrison.
” I think our society actually discourages play and laughter and fun because we’re so focused on standardized testing and learning,” said Morrison.
Her advice, to incorporate humor into your life, is simple. Keep a journal and write down what made you laugh during that day. Do fun activities, even if they seem childish do what makes you happy. The most important is staying away from negative people.
“We tend to think, ‘we’re grown up and we can’t do that any more.’ But, I find that the more often we play and laugh the better we feel and the longer we live,” says Morrison.
No matter your age or where you’re at in life Morrison says happiness begins with you. “Everybody has the potential to practice it and to bring more joy into their own life.”