Individuals who scored highly on affiliative and self-enhancing humor made the beneficial contributions discussed above, but aggressive and self-defeating humor was linked to worse overall well-being, increased anxiety, and despair. Making fun of others is a bad thing, so it’s crucial to aim for the correct kind of humor when developing your sense of humor. Research has shown that humor can actually strengthen your physical immune system in addition to serving as a mental immune system. Laughter also lowers blood pressure, pulse rate, and muscle tension, which helps the cardiovascular system. In addition to enhancing your health, laughing can increase productivity. In contrast to control groups that watched horror movies or quantum physics lectures, volunteers who watched comedies were substantially better at solving a word association task that required creative thinking. This is due to the fact that laughter activates the anterior cingulate cortex, a region of the brain connected to attention and judgment. In a another study, participants were given the challenge of coming up with a New Yorker-style caption, and those who did so produced 20% more ideas than those who did not. With the aim of teaching “the power (and importance) of humor to make and scale positive change in the world, and also – surprise! – to achieve business objectives, build more effective and innovative organizations, cultivate stronger bonds, and capture more lasting memories,” colleges like Stanford are now offering business courses on humor in the workplace.