As someone who is always selling the benefits of humor and the need to grow and nurture a sense of humor about work, family and life in general, I often get asked to recommend funny movies, books or TV shows. This is always tricky because humor truly is in the eye of the beholder. (Or should I say, in the belly of the laugher?) And it’s important to celebrate your own style of humor. Research into the effectiveness of humor shows that when hospital patients choose their own humor resources, the medicinal benefits are far greater.
A study from the University of Michigan reported in the Journal of Psychological Science also found that people who watch more comedies tend to experience more positive emotions and tend to think in more inclusive terms. Other studies have shown that watching comedies increases people’s pain tolerance (which only helps, I suppose, if you are being injured while watching your favorite sitcom, or maybe sitting in the dentist chair) and helps us think more creatively and more broadly.
Most humor experts do agree though that for the mental and physical health benefits of humor to be most effective, the humor needs to be a good match to the person’s style. Yet, according to humor researcher Herbert Lefcourt, this isn’t as easy as it might seem. Most people haven’t seriously thought about their own unique “humor print,” and some people, Lefcourt suggests, are embarrassed to admit that their favorite choice for a good chuckle-fest is a Three Stooges marathon (this is known, I believe, as “the stooge factor.)
So with that said, here are just a few of my favorite resources that have helped me laugh over the years. I’d love to hear from you though: What is your favorite all-time comedy, comedian, sitcom or funny read?
Mike’s Top-10 TV Comedy Picks (from the last 15 years+, in no particular order)
*For more suggestions/reminders, check out: Best Sitcoms Ever
Mike’s Top-10 Funny Movies (again, in random order…I’m not brave enough to rank them)
For more ideas, check out IMDB’s Top-100 Funniest Movies of all Times.
Mike’s Top-10 Favorite Comedians (in no particular order)
Check out The Top-100 Comedians of all Time
Mike’s Top-10 Funny Reads/Authors (in no particular order)
Check out the 100 Funniest Books of all Time List
Suggestions? Glaring omissions? Please, keep them to yourself.
I’m kidding of course. I’d love to hear your favorites. Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael Kerr is a very funny Canadian motivational speaker and international business speaker who specializes in using humor to drive success at work.
“Just wanted to say “WOW!” Our group has had many speakers over the years, but none the likes of Mike Kerr.”
Richard Dansereau, President, NAPA Autopro BDG
“Michael Kerr is one of the best speakers I have seen. I highly recommend him!”
Veronica D. Bouvier, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Aspen Properties Ltd.
“Mike held the full attention of our senior management team for a full FOUR hour
presentation – no small accomplishment!”
Martine Rothblatt, CEO, United Therapeutics
“Our participants rated you as the speaker with the highest quality and relevance.”
Lana J. Larocque, Alberta Human Resources