Do you feel better after a good cry? If you’re like most people you do. Crying is our pressure relief valve. When the stresses and strains of the day get too much, a little cry gets our minds back on track and reduces the levels of stress hormones that are swirling around in our systems.
Most of the crying that we do is in response to the low level frustration of daily life and anxiety, and surprisingly (or not), watching a sad movie. Of course we also cry at major upheavals involving loss and grief, but thankfully for many of us we don’t have very much of that kind of trauma in our lives too often.
Crying isn’t just for the bad parts of life though. We cry with joy and happiness all the time. We cry with joy when we greet our newborns. We howl with tears of laughter when something really tickles our funny bones, and our emotions spill over when we hear a moving piece of music. Those are all good things, experiences that we’re enjoying on an intense level.