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8 Fun Ways to Beat the Quarantine Blues

The challenges of navigating life in a coronavirus pandemic can make even the most positive person slip into a melancholy mood. There is nothing uplifting about having to substitute socializing with social distancing and being bombarded with doctor’s warnings. There is also no fun in losing income due to business closures and having to abide by cautionary shelter-in-place mandates that feel a lot like being under house arrest.

We can only hope that this current crisis is only temporary and that things will eventually return to some semblance of normal. Until that happens, engaging in spirit-lifting activities is vital to preventing an onset of depression and keeping the blues at bay.

One good way to work on maintaining a pleasant disposition through all of this is by making humor a part of your daily routine. Increase your intake of comedy, foolishness, funny thoughts and anything that provides amusement and makes you laugh. You could be healthier for it.

Humor provokes laughter and laughter is what triggers a release of endorphins, the natural chemicals in our body that make us feel good. Laughter also reduces stress and boosts our immune system, that network of cells and proteins in our body that fight viruses and bacteria when they enter and helps protect us against infection.

While humor offers no miracle cure for serious health conditions or global pandemics, having it around you can help place you in a better state of mind to deal with it. It’s also a great way to bond with your family and make your time at home together more enjoyable.

Here are some humor activities can help jump-start your laugh track:

  1. April Fool’s trickery: April is National Humor Month and it is only fitting that the first of the month is the signature day for foolishness. April Fool’s is a day when good-natured pranks are played by all generations in a spirit of fun. If you can come up with a clever trick that fools your ‘victim’ they will hopefully respond with laughter or at least a smile when you shout, “April Fool!” Check out this video on 40 different April Fool’s pranks to play on family and friends.
  2. Quarantine karaoke: If you don’t have a karaoke machine, just turn on Pandora or Spotify and sing along. If you are completely tone deaf, show your listeners some mercy by lip syncing your way through the song.
  3. Family comedy night: Gather with family members for a story hour that is exclusively about comedy. Swap funny memories about hilarious moments through storytelling or standup.
  4. Phone a funny friend. Who is that person who manages to make you laugh no matter what the circumstances? Give that person a call and let the humor begin!
  5. Laughter Yoga: Laugh nonstop for no reason. You don’t need comedy or a funny mood to participate in this activity. Just fake it until you make it. Before you know it, you will be laughing naturally and uncontrollably and relieving stress in the process. Learn the basics of laughter yoga here.
  6. Watch classic and contemporary comedy: Cartoons, sitcoms, standup and comedic films and recordings, will produce endless belly laughs and happy tears. The selections are endless. From hilarious cartoons like Tom and Jerry and The Simpsons; slapstick sitcoms like The Carol Burnett Show and I Love Lucy, to the unfiltered humor of Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, George Carlin, the Saturday Night Live cast and many other masters of hilarity.
  7. Read humor lit: Select from this list of 32 of the funniest books ever written.
  8. Share your old high-school pictures. Keep your kids in stitches by showing them your old braces or bangs, or those awkward band pictures. While you’re at it, consider digitizing your memories. For professional guidance, here’s how to get started.

Until further notice, wash your hands for 20 seconds, and keep laughing.

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