Anxiety is a tricky thing. It sneaks past our consciousness, wedges itself into our relationships and makes itself at home. Its ability to crumble all of our practical thoughts is so dang sneaky that a lot of couples don't even take it seriously. Insecurity, sure. Depression, oh yeah. But anxiety? What can anxiety do?
Answer: more than you think.
Anxiety is the insidious emotion that ensnares your confidence, your decision-making, and your stability, not just as a person, but as a partner, too. The effects of chronic anxiety are nothing to laugh about, but that’s the interesting thing - laughter is actually the cure.
Laughing instantly relaxes muscles, increases oxygen intake, and shifts our focus.
When anxiety starts to close in and it feels like there’s a 2-ton elephant sitting on your chest or a fist closing around your throat (or, in particularly unfortunate cases, both) epinephrine and cortisol, the hormones associated with stress, pulse through your veins. The results make you feel tense, high-strung, and nervous.
Laughter sends a blast of oxygen to the bloodstream and instantly reduces cortisol levels. Within seconds, laughter can loosen the grip of anxiety. It might sound counter-intuitive (I mean, who wants to start giggling mid-panic attack?), but the immediate relief is undeniable.
The next time anxiety closes in, find a reason to chuckle: whether it’s a goofy meme, a silly text to your partner, or a funny video. Laughing instantly relaxes muscles, increases oxygen intake, and shifts our focus. It doesn’t mean anxiety goes away forever, but little by little, you can reduce its foothold. One puppy video at a time.