Laughing My Way Through 2018 The Value in Becoming a Humorholic

 

Every year, right after Christmas, I hole up in my office reflecting  on the past year and creating my goals for the next twelve months. Wait! Don’t stop reading, I’m not going to bore you with what you already know about how to create a list of things you want to accomplish in 2018. Instead, I’d like to share some information about one item on my list.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This year I’m aspiring to the status of humorholic. The inspiration came to me by reading a rather dated book filled with wisdom. In 1998, humorist, Larry Wilde,  published “When You’re Up to Your Eyeballs in Alligators: How to Use Your Sense of Humor for Unlimited Success, Better Health & Staying Sane When the World Gets a Little Crazy.”

Why Humor?

Larry’s book, regaling the multiple benefits of humor, convinced me to develop this skill. We all know that laughter is a timeless wonder drug, but listen up all you people who join a gym, Jenny Craig or Weight Watcher’s every January. (All  good things of course). But, did you know that during a solid belly laugh we lose 35 calories? Just think, if you do that internal jogging brought on by tickling your funny bone 15 times/day you can burn 525 calories. (As Larry puts it, “You can laugh your ass off.”)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Getting Healthier 

Another prominent by-product of humor is enhanced immunity. Scientific evidence indicates there are physical and chemical links between the mind and the immune system. Back in 2012, studies at Loma Linda University revealed that watching a comedy video strengthens your immune system in measurable ways.

How about reducing your stress level? There is nothing silly about the fact that laughter reduces hormones that cause stress. Perhaps the reason most optimists are healthy people is a positive state of mind keeps healthy people well and also speeds up the recovery process in those who are ill.

Career Benefits

For those of you placing extra focus on your career in the coming year, note a study done by executive recruiting firm Robert Half International revealed individuals with a sense of humor do better at their jobs than those with little or no active funny bone. Looking to get that promotion? In addition to all your hard work, try making your boss and peers laugh more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lastly, don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself. (Being blonde, that one’s a no-brainer for me.) Self-deprecating humor is a powerful force in bonding with others.

So, if your convinced becoming a humorholic will improve many areas of your life, add it to your list just like I did. Please leave your comments, or a joke if you are so inclined. I love hearing from YOU!

A Wall Worth Celebrating My Tribute to a Special Dad

 

My father-in-law was a very special guy. He was a hardworking man who loved life but what I remember most was the way he took pride in family wins.

Dad created a“Wall of Fame”along a hallway leading to his bedroom.

In an area most people would find the area suitable for beautiful art, he proudly displayed proof of any family achievement.

If a grandchild won a certificate for 1st place in a spelling-bee it hit the wall, when a his off-springs graduated copies of diplomas were framed and hung, and when I received a promotion, evidence of my corporate climb received billing on the wall. The entire family loved that wall, it spurred us on to work harder and aim higher, but most of all it taught us to celebrate success.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All too often we set goals and make the upward climb forgetting to pause at the top of our mountain and savor the view. Stop for awhile, do your happy dance and take a well earned bow. Savor and enjoy the kudos sent your way from friends and family.

While you’re doing a victory lap, consider those who supported you.  Our star speller received encouragement and word drilling from a parent which helped her win the contest. Like our word queen, you probably didn’t get to the goal line without some help.  Be sure to pull your team into the celebration. Honor them with words of gratitude and praise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By sharing your good feelings you inspire others to forge on and capitalize on their dreams.

For multiple reasons, it’s important to avoid rushing on to tackle the next goal. Slow down and spend some time processing the win you just scored. Analyze what you learned, what worked, what didn’t, and which skills need improvement.

On your way to the next goal, mindfully elevate the journey. Take the time to celebrate the smaller milestones achieved en route.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Doing so provides increased motivation to continue and bolsters self-esteem. Reward yourself with some small token, because you earned it. Experiencing joy in the journey is the point. If you wait until the deed is done to feel fulfilled, you may be waiting a very long time. By prolonging the sensation of those good dopamine vibes, you risk discouragement and defeat.

If I learned anything from the man who created the display of family accolades, it is all of the above. Although sadly both Dad and his wall are gone, I thank him for teaching me to celebrate not only my wins but each step along the way.

Giving the Precious Gift of Kind Words

My friend Melissa is one of the most generous people I know. She blesses the lives of many in a very special way. When the moment presents itself, Melissa never misses an opportunity to lavish sincere praise.

Not only does she express her kindness to others by issuing compliments, Melissa does so in a significant way.

The other day I was the recipient of one of Melissa’s bighearted gifts. She attended a presentation I gave at a business meeting. Not only did she absorb and remember the message I delivered, the next morning when I visited my Facebook page Melissa tagged me in a post.

Other friends might have sent me a quick private message telling me they enjoyed my presentation. Not Melissa. She wrote a lengthy paragraph of “shout out” praise to be viewed on social media. Her act of kindness was extremely generous and an example of how Melissa goes out of her way to lift up people making them feel special.

Generosity is the virtue of giving freely and abundantly. Sometimes we give time, in other instances money or material goods. People like Melissa find innovative ways to make the world a brighter place with carefully chosen words.

Khalil Gibran is quoted as saying, “Generosity is giving more than you can and taking less than your need.”

Wise words to live by and yet, conversely, we can all identify acquaintances, perhaps even family members, who either refrain, or rarely think to offer up an “atta girl” or extend encouragement. Often in my coaching practice I encounter individuals who talk about never receiving a compliment from a parent, sibling or their boss.

Denying a deserving person a word of praise is the opposite of being generous. In fact, withholding admiration on a consistent basis can even be a form of emotional punishment.

Not everyone is as highly skilled as Melissa in the art of a compliment. If you are holding back praising others because it feels awkward, or you fear doing it wrong, just practice. Start small.

Try telling your boss you like her dress (if you do). Next try focusing on characteristics and skills. Perhaps your coworker wrote a procedure streamlining a task and making your work-life easier. Applaud that action, verbally, in writing or at a staff meeting in front of the boss.

There is only one rule when passing out compliments. Be sincere. Coupling sincerity with generosity makes your compliment memorable.

Make a point of issuing gracious compliments this week. Gift others with words of praise. Remember it costs you nothing to be kind, but may mean everything to someone else.