Finding Laughter: Is Laughter Needed at Work? (Day 18)

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Finding Laughter 31 Days of writing“People spend about 75% of their adult wake time doing work-related activities . . . 

  • getting ready for work,
  • traveling to work,
  • working,
  • contemplating work,
  • and decompressing after work.

“If we spend that much time in that part of our lives, we ought to enjoy it and be energized by it.”  Ken Blanchard

And yet, how many folks are disgruntled with work? Complain about it? Dread going? And don’t even give their best efforts because of all the negativity they are surrounded by or express themselves?

“Life is too precious just to be passing through to retirement,”                                 (Stephen Lundin in Fish!)

Perhaps it is time to do something different. Maybe part of the problem is the work-atmosphere. “People like to work in an environment that is fun, energizing, and where they can make a difference,” (Stephen Lundin).

I recently reread The book FishA Proven Way To Boost Morale And Improve Results by Stephen C. Lundin, Harry Paul, and John Christensen. (I’ve read it four times so far.)

It lists four principles to embrace that will help us enjoy and be energized at work. The most important action is choose your attitude.

“By accepting that you choose your attitude, you demonstrate a level of personal accountability and pro-activity.

“Choosing your attitude and acting like a victim are mutually exclusive.

“Choose to bring your best self to the world and to love the work you do.”                      Stephen Lundin

I am a Follower of Jesus Christ. And the Bible talks about how we are to do our work: with excellence. And part of that excellence is to have a good attitude.

Below are the 4 principles in bullet form . . . 

  • One. Choose your attitude – without this foundation the following three ideas are a waste of time.
  • Two. Play – we can do this in a respectful manner and still be professionals getting the work done well.
  • Three. Make their day – concentrate on helping the customer enjoy their interaction with you.
  • Four. Be present – pay attention to only the one in front of you. (put away that cell phone and stop talking to your co-worker)

It is not always easy to make changes in our attitude or actions. But “the risk of doing nothing is probably greater than the risk of acting,” (Stephen Lundin in Fish!).

Another important area to consider is meaning. We all want to do something that has meaning, that can make a difference in the lives of others. But we can’t all do “meaningful” work. Or can we?

“Meaning is not something you stumble across, like the answer to a riddle or a prize in a treasure hunt. Meaning is something . . .

  • you build into your life.
  • you build it out of your own past,
  • out of your affections and loyalties,
  • out of the experience of humankind as it is passed on to you,
  • out of your own talent and understanding,
  • out of the things you believe in,
  • out of the things and people you love,
  • out of the values for which you are willing to sacrifice something.

“The ingredients are there. You are the one who can put them together into that pattern that will be your life.

“Let it be a life that has dignity and meaning for you. If it does, then the particular balance of success or failure is of less account.” John Gardner

SIDE NOTE: Working with the public (restaurant, hotel, utility company, etc) might not seem the most meaningful work to you. But I know that when I get good customer service, it makes my day. And that rep is a VIP to me! And I tell others about it because, unfortunately, good customer service is becoming a rarity.

And on the flip side, when I get bad or even no customer service, I tell others. And I will do ALL I can to NOT frequent that company again.

So people who work in “non-meaningful jobs,” you really need an attitude check. Your work DOES have meaning to your customers. And I am sorry that so many of them are grouchy or don’t think to say, “Thank You.” So I will say it, “Thanks for the excellent way you took care of my request/need. You rock!”

When levity is used to appropriately ease a burden or relieve tension it is greatly appreciated,” (Mike Myatt).

What does all this have to do with laughter and work? Is it needed? Yes! I think it is needed. I think it makes the workplace a more fun, healthier, more energized and more productive place to be.

It is my contention that laughter (healthy, community-connecting, stress reducing, playful laughter) cannot be part of our work culture if the four principles are not practiced. Some individuals may be laughter-profuse, but the work place as a whole is one of stress, seriousness, illness, and laughter-deficiency.

Watch the TED Talk, The Epidemic of Over-Seriousness.                                                           The review for this talk will go live tomorrow.

Your Turn . . .

  • Is your work place one of laughter or seriousness?
  • What is something you do or can do to increase the amount of play there?
  • What is your thought on Lundin’s four principles? Is there one you’d like to concentrate on?

Resources used for this post:

  1. FishA Proven Way To Boost Morale And Improve Resultsby Stephen C. Lundin, Harry Paul, and John Christensen
  2.  Fish! Website and Blog

I am joining 100’s of others at #write31days to write every day in October 2015 on a single topic. My topic is 31 Days of Finding Laughter. I will spend time each day studying laughter to see if I can improve my laughter quotient.

Go here for the landing page which has all the posts in one spot.

Read, learn, and discover with me what this world of laughter is all about and is it all that it’s cracked up to be. And be sure to leave a comment. Talking together will make for a richer, interactive experience for all of us.

Entry filed under: 31 Days of Writing, Laughter, Main. Tags: .

Finding Laughter: You Can Find Your Laughter But You Can’t Choose to be a Comedian (Day 17) Finding Laughter: If You Can Joke, You Can Cope (Day 19)

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Robyn  |  . at .

    I love the people I work with and we do a lot of laughing, so it makes it fun.


  • 2. stuckinindiana  |  . at .

    Enjoyed reading your post. I’m working from my home at the present time. HOWEVER, I definitely like to laugh & try to keep things upbeat & positive in my communications with others. Thanks for posting 😀



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