Have you ever heard laughter that cracks you up even before you hear the joke? Or have you worked alongside people who like to laugh in ways that speed the clock during boring routines? Workplace stories such as Carol Cortisol’s Certification Day, that leave people laughing, or Sam Serotonin’s Pizza Pandemonium that teaches caring through comedy, also leave lasting impressions for good.
When I taught at McGill University, and worked with Inuit in the most Northern communities on Baffin Island, we laughed a lot when my English smacked up against their Inuktitut in ways that neither language made sense. Laughter crosses over words, melds ages, bridges beliefs, and draws the best from brains, often separated by barriers few can cross well. Have you seen it happen?
Laughter’s also the best balancing elixir of the human brain, and yet still tops the missing-medicine-list in most workplaces. Does hilarity hail from your circles? If you’ve felt tensions flee in the wake of a simple joke, hooted over funny faux pas, or cut up over one-liners when least expected to double you up – you’ve likely also seen humor’s upshot to the brain. Humor’s especially effective when people laugh at themselves, in ways that lift morale, reduce tension or communicate differences in side-splitting style.
The man behind the hilarious memes, Ben Huh, gets 170 million visits to his online site daily because it gives 5 minutes of laughter a day. Not surprisingly, participants consistently rank humorous speakers as most effective, and humorous peers as favorite. Do you? It’s also true that, while research shows how lectures tend to work against human brains, at the same time, humor open minds to learn and retain more.
Unfortunately, some still wield humor to diminish people who differ, yet self-deprecating humor often attracts unity from differences. At its best, humor disarms people from attacking ideas presented, so that comments and questions pop up to replace circular counter arguments that that fail to find conclusions.
You needn’t develop the skills of a successful stand up comedian to see laughter work in your favor. Bantering can also increase a person’s chances for promotion, can ease negotiations in arduous meetings, and can even build trust among colleagues or clients. Have you seen it happen?
Simply because humor involves additional operations and areas of the brain, it can also help people to remember more information, and can aid a person’s transfer from cutting edge theories into highly competitive practices.
Experts recommend humor to release endorphins, trigger health, increase relaxation, and alter brain chemicals in the direction of winning. How so?
1. Release endorphins into the brain so that pain can be reduced, and people appear happily distracted from difficult situations.
2. Trigger health by stimulating the immune system and connecting mind and body exchanges in positive and healthier ways.
3. Increase relaxation through added oxygen to the brain, better air exchange and fuel for deeper thought or learning.
4. Alter chemicals within the brain, in ways that reduce stress, lift emotions and contribute to and sustains a sense of well being.
Check out recent research on laughter’s exilir effects as it ratchets up both emotional and mental health, and you’ll likely set an agenda to bring more deliberate humor into your life and workplace.
YOUR TURN! Join our Brain Based Circles! Would love to meet you at any of the following!
Created by Ellen Weber, Brain Based Tasks for Growth Mindset
Smart skill 21 = Expect Outrageous Agility with Age
Smart skill 22 = Expect Neuron Pathways to Dynamic Solutions
Smart skill 23 = Expect Peace in Brain Based Bits
Smart skill 24 = Expect to Bypass Bullies Where you Work
Smart skill 25 = Expect Vision to Fuse Racial Differences
Smart skill 26 = Expect Calm Under Pressure
Smart skill 27 = Expect Brain Benefits from Humor
Smart skill 28 = Expect Active Participation by Facilitating
Smart skill 29 = Expect Added Value with Name Calling
Smart skill 30 = Expect More Memory by Outsourcing Key Facts