What would we do without humor? A daily dose of humor diffuses stress, anxiety, and other nasty things that cause our bodies and minds to go off kilter.
I look for the humor in everyday, routine activities and generally find that when I share something amusing, people appreciate it. Think about it: when people laugh together, they are aligned at that very moment. It’s a tiny break from the humdrum of the day that can spark everything from fresh perspective to hope to optimism.
Laughter does indeed have proven physiological benefits. It boosts the immune system. It decreases stress hormones, including cortisol. I even learned about laughter yoga from my friend, Margie. It’s a form of yoga which involves prolonged voluntary laughter, which in effect creates the physical, mental and spiritual benefits of laughter.
Earlier this week I was processing the outcome of a difficult client meeting. After walking around for a few minutes with a “deer in the headlights” expression, I asked myself, “What’s funny about this situation?” I had an answer immediately and in an instant, my entire vibe changed.
This question is a form of reframing, an important skill to have in your back pocket in high-level environments (especially when your employees are watching how you, as the leader, are reacting to something).
Think of “What’s funny about this situation?” as a variation of a more general reframing question, “How else can I look at this?” Adding the twist of humor can prove effective when the situation is tense. You don’t necessarily need to share what you’re thinking with others in that moment. The important thing is to reset your attitude so that the best of you is showing.
Give it a try and let me know how it works for you.
Have a great week!