We’ve all been there. Something hilarious happens right before the prayer starts or you happen to open your eyes at an inopportune time. Suddenly you find yourself trying to suppress a laugh that does NOT want to be contained.
Your gut reaction is to close your face. Yeah, that’s right. Closing your mouth, and sometimes nose, so tight to ensure no giggles can escape. Some people choose to cover their mouth with their hand for reinforcement.
All your instincts are telling you this is your best option. However, this will inevitably result startling outbursts. These outbursts can be in the form of embarrassing snorts, nose laughing, mouth trumpeting, or a full-on explosion. Once one of these happens, you’re a goner. You just end up giving up and cry-laughing with your arms folded.
So how do you avoid such a disaster? I’ll tell you. It’s quite simple. However, it will require you to do the exact opposite of what feels natural. In the words of Troy Jennings, you have to embrace the laugh to hide the laugh…
Open your face. Yep, keep your mouth and nose open. Now that your airways are unhindered, you can breathe easier while avoiding embarrassing mouth or nose noises.
The key is short, shallow breaths. Again, it seems counter intuitive, but it will keep your breathing quieter and will allow to truly embrace your laughter.
NOTE: This technique is best used only during prayers as people’s eyes are supposed to be closed, preventing them from seeing you do a stupid face.