Writing poetry encourages me to laugh at life's little mistakes as well as its tragic and difficult problems...furthermore, when one is able to laugh at oneself, encouraging others to laugh becomes much easier.
Last year for example I spent thousands of hours on the telephone long distance encouraging a friend of mine to laugh. His family said he had not laughed in six years early onset. It worked. Now he is working on poetry and attending writing conferences and sharing his new joy he found.