Posts Tagged ‘Laughter’

I’m Thankful for Humor

Posted: December 18, 2013 in Humor
Tags: , , ,

LaughI’ve had some good laughs in the past few days – some with my team at work, some online, some at home. Laughter is healthy, both physically and emotionally. Over time I’ve written several blog posts related to humor, and I’m compelled to do so again as I reflect on some of the highlights of recent days.

There was a period of several weeks recently where work was more stressful for me than usual due to turnover on the team, but a new team is forming and it looks like it will be a fun group. Some of the apprehension of recent weeks is giving way to confidence in our future. Humor isn’t the reason for the confidence, but it is a welcome indicator of the manner in which personalities are coming together to gel and start a habit of getting things done while having fun along the way. That’s important. Workplaces, homes, schools, churches and other types of gathering places that don’t encourage and inject humor into everyday life are missing out on an important part of the joy of living.

A former pastor of mine in Missouri would occasionally tell his congregation that some of them looked like they were weened on dill pickles! At least that line got a chuckle out of them for a brief moment before they returned to their typical sour expressions. Perhaps you know people like that.

I appreciate people who can find humor in everyday things. I like it when a well-timed spoken line breaks the tension in a room. I don’t want to be around someone who thinks he always has to be funny constantly – never having a serious conversation, but I admire those who have good judgment on when to let their humorous side show and when to tone it down.

Life has enough stressors. We need humor as a daily part of life to balance things out.

There are different ways to evaluate how well a team fits together at work.  There is the obvious measure of whether they get the work done that they are expected to do.  What are their goals and how successfully do they accomplish them?  Without that, other means of evaluation don’t matter much.

In addition to mere accomplishment of goals, however, is the evaluation of how well a team actually fits together as a group of people.  Do they get along with each other?  Do they like being around one another?  Would they choose to hang out together outside of work?  Do they come home and tell stories with smiles on their faces of what happened during the day or are they anxious to separate and put all thoughts of each other aside until the next day?

I’d like to suggest an indicator of a healthy team – humor.  It is only an indicator because, for example, if the top measure above of accomplishing goals isn’t achieved, then having a fun time at failing doesn’t make for a good team.  Since many of us spend more waking time with coworkers than those we live with, it’s important that humor as an important and healthy part of life also be a part of a work team’s dynamics.

Today I found myself just laughing out loud from time to time at work at the comments made by those around me.  I work with people who enjoy their work, who do it well, and who enjoy each other along the way.  That is a wonderful situation to have.  I know I am fortunate in that regard.  Such has not always been the case in my professional career.  It makes for effective and enjoyable days when humor is a regular part of it.

Is it possible to have a healthy team and hot have much daily humor along the way?  I suppose so.  But I would rather have a healthy team with humor than without it.

Leap year lesson #117 is Humor can be an indicator of a healthy team.