Self-Deprecating Humour is Linked to Psychological Wellbeing, Finds a New Study
It is easy to assume that those who use self-deprecating humour to gain the laughter of the crowd may be shielding some deep-set insecurities. Well, according to the University of Granada this may be an entirely false assumption.
Researchers from the Mind, Brain and Behaviour Research Centre (CIMCYC) have explored different kinds of humour to determine whether a person’s comedic streak is connected to the way in which they cope with anger. They tested 1,068 Spanish adults aged between 18 and 65 years old across five different studies.
They discovered that the use of self-deprecating humour doesn’t necessarily have negative connotations as has been typically thought. “In particular, we have observed that a greater tendency to employ self-defeating humour is indicative of high scores in psychological wellbeing dimensions such as happiness and, to a lesser extent, sociability,” said Jorge Torres Marín, co-author of the study.
Their findings illustrated how other forms of humour are particularly beneficial in various contexts. It can instil a sense of confidence in unpleasant situations by allowing people to find the humour and silver lining in any circumstance.
However, while self-deprecating humour may have its advantages, the researchers also noted that it may be indicative of suppressed anger.
“[The] results suggest that humour, even when presented as benign or well-intentioned, can also represent a strategy for masking negative intentions,” said co-author Ginés Navarro-Carrillo.
However, the scientists have stressed that more studies will need to be taken over time to indicate a consistent argument.