How To Use Humor To Reconnect Back Home
Sharing laughs with friends back home after English language study abroad is a great way to reconnect. You know what tickles your friend’s funny bone, and you’ve got loads of new material from your ESL study in the US. You and your friend share a common culture, and by extension, a common sense of humor. Humor is culturally specific. What makes people laugh in France may fall flat in Pakistan, or worse yet, incite anger and offense.
The Benefits Of Laughter
Laughter as it turns out is good for you too. It burns calories, releases natural “feel good” chemicals, enhances creativity, and boosts your immune function among other impressive benefits. But the best part of sharing laughs with your friends back in your home country is that it deepens your friendships.
Your time studying English abroad meant there was an ocean between you and your childhood friends. After you return home you may feel that, a bit of emotional distance remains. A way to bridge that distance is with humor. There’s actually a study that proves, “shared culture promotes affiliation, and provides evidence of the special role of humor in interpersonal relations.” Yeah, that’s exactly right. I DO like the people I share common ground and laughs with more than everyone else—you probably do too.
Laughter Even Helps Your Career
Sharing laughs with coworkers is a terrific way to break tension. If you’re stuck pulling an all-nighter because something went awry at work, instead of playing the blame game, and sighing about missing that reunion dinner, take a moment to find the humor in the situation. People become more creative in conflict situations when humor is employed. They’re more likely to see a challenge, and be able to consider multiple solutions after a good, tension-releasing laugh. Demonstrating a sense of humor in a crisis doesn’t go unnoticed by your boss either. It’s a big check in the plus column to most employers. They know others will enjoy working with you, and clients will be charmed. Some of the most successful companies have developed famous senses of humor about themselves, and are rewarded for it by their customers.
Being home from ESL study after so much time abroad may mean you need to employ your comic skills to get the good times rolling with your friends. Telling funny stories of English misunderstanding you had while in the US, is a self-deprecating way to remind them that you share the same culture, and you’re the same person you were before your English studies. Share some laughs, and you’ll find any awkwardness between you will disappear.