Silver Linings Playbook – I’ve been saying it for years



Well at last! I’ve been peddling humour as a way of dealing with mental illness for years now.  And we now have a film that’s steps out of the shadows and utilises mental illness aspects to generate the humour. What joy it is to see mental illness being portrayed in this way. For the vast majority of us, mental illness is not terminal or something that utterly blights our lives. Occasionally it can, and it is debilitating at times, but for me, the way to deal with it is to laugh at the applesauce of my condition – Bipolar.

It’s taken me to the darkest of places, but equally, it’s provided some of my best comic moments: with its inherent capacity to humiliate, so it makes sense to find the funny side of it, and it eases the pain. Well it does for me, and I have no end of funny stories, with me as the centre of whatever nonsense had occurred.

Self deprecating humour is a wonderful way to stay humble and show the world you can laugh – mainly at yourself, and in my experience, that laughter encourages others to shed their in-built prejudices and see you as fun and approachable, and without all the reticence one experiences if one stays quiet and thoughtful. In a sense the humour and openness challenges their perceptions, and often results in a ‘ I thought you were a bit odd, but actually you are good fun and great company’  attitude.

My suggestion is to put no limits on your humour, and stop worrying about what is in bad taste or taboo. For the odd social cod you may drop , the rewards for your ego are worth it. Humour relaxes people and that’s when perceptions get changed.

Even if you are not naturally funny or witty, just try telling a story that was embarrassing. Once told and exposed, you’ve broken the chains that bind you, and when someone laughs, you learn that much of what you thought was a big issue, hardly rates a raised eyebrow.

Try it!

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