Laughter is the medicine of the soul . . . yeah , right!
How can you laugh when:
- budgets are looming;
- your team is anxious;;
- you’re undecided about your next move;
- it’s hump day and you’ve been in meetings all morning;
- your office communication is suffering;
- and let’s not talk about the company culture!
This is exactly the moment to insert a little humor. If you examine how you make decision throughout your day, you’ll find out that it’s largely emotional first. Let’s take a look:
- When do you eat breakfast? When you feel hungry.
- When do you set staff meetings? When you think it’s a great time for people to contribute.
- When do you give praise to an employee? When you hear they’ve gone above and beyond.
- When do you feel accomplished? When you see the piles on your desk dissipate or the lists struck through.
See what I mean.
There’s also a distinct link between laughter and mental health and fortitude, according to helpguide.org:
- Laughter dissolves distressing emotions. You can’t feel anxious, angry, or sad when you’re laughing.
- Laughter helps you relax and recharge. It reduces stress and increases energy, enabling you to stay focused and accomplish more.
- Humor shifts perspective, allowing you to see situations in a more realistic, less threatening light. A humorous perspective creates psychological distance, which can help you avoid feeling overwhelmed.
Here are a few I’ll add:
- Laughter evens the playing field. In the middle of tough conversations, deciding to insert a little humor takes away the bite.
- Great smiles and teeth are attractive. Ha!
- Laughter is authentic. Sure, you can fake a smile. And maybe a chuckle. But a true, heart, soul-stirring laugh? Try it. I dare ya.
- Laughter attracts people. Have you ever said, “I wonder who’s laughing so profusely (then found yourself wandering toward the sound)?
- Laughter connects people. It’s just one of those things that if shared properly, it creates instant connection.
- Laughter lets you know, there’s no situation as serious as you’re making it. Not one.
Here are a few tips for purposely inserting a little “ha-ha” in your day, while being a strategic leader:
- Start meetings by asking, what’s the funniest thing that happened to you over the weekend? (Give a prize to the winner)
- Insert a funny video in your slide deck (The Moonwalking Bear is always a great one).
- Replace those rigid goal posters with candid shots of your inner circle genuinely laughing.
There are several more, and I could go on and on, but you get it. Humor is meant for the highly driven leader in you. It’s an integral part to combine with your sense of direction, your leadership characteristics, and your communication prowess. Intently make it a part of who you are, and watch your world greatly enhanced.