Laughter At Work: Applying Humor in Stressful Situations
If you come home after a hard day’s work and feel utterly miserable, ask yourself a simple question: when was the last time you had a good laugh?
You could be working in a hospital, law firm or stock exchange company, be an investigative journalist or a human rights activist. No matter how serious or demanding your job, everyone—be they in a uniform or suit—needs some form of catharsis to cope with the pressures of doing what they do.
Contrary to popular belief, being able to laugh at work is not a sign of fooling around; it’s a great indicator of a healthy corporate culture. Here’s why:
Humor is a Scientifically-Proven Antidote to Stress
Sure, there’s a time and place for a raunchy joke; but when a situation is beyond your control, you need some form of work-appropriate stress relief to balance your emotions.
The correlation between humor and immune function is no joke!
Humor works like a charm to lighten up the mood, shift your perspective and channel your energy positively in an inherently negative situation. Cultural memes, hilarious GIFs and non-offensive gibes are all easy ways to boost motivation levels and promote cognitive restructuring at the workplace.
Humor Brings Your Team Together
There’s nothing sadder and more detrimental to business than an alienated workforce. In fact, the quickest way for productivity levels to drop is to make sure your team is serious ALL THE TIME.
Remember: a team that laughs together thrives together.
By celebrating humor at the workplace, you allow employees to release some of the tension associated with a tough job and create opportunities to bond, stimulate creativity and bring a can-do attitude to work.
Humor Celebrates Authenticity
Remember what we said about humor and productivity? Well, it’s especially true when it comes to showing your appreciation in corporate settings.
We’ve all seen the trite and generic exchanges that normally follow or precede conferences and performance evaluation meetings. Humor works effectively to add spontaneity to predictable office moments, and therefore makes a genuine impact on the receiver.
Instead of starting your discussion on an awkward and uninspiring note, you can inject your presentation with relatable and authentic jokes that not only make you stand out, but fuel your passion for whatever it is that you do!
At the end of the day, we all tend to forget we’re “humor beings” who crave laughter as much as acceptance and love.
Steve Rizzo is a Hall of Fame Speaker and former headline comedian whose motivational comedy inspires business leaders and corporate executives to rethink their management strategy.