Personal Productivity

Laughing increases your productivity

AUTHOR: Francisco Sáez
tags Motivation Creativity Science

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Laughing increases your productivity

Humor is a tangible demonstration of the most important attributes of the right side of the brain: the ability to place situations in context, to see the big picture, to combine different elements to create new things, and so on. According to various investigations, humor reduces hostility, relieves stress, allows a better criticism and helps to communicate difficult messages. It turns out that, used skillfully, it can be a great stimulus for creativity, a trait increasingly necessary for success.

There are studies that show that happiness positively affects productivity (1) and therefore suggest that companies should pay more attention to their employees’ emotions. Most good managers have a natural facility to incorporate humor into their management, a characteristic trait of those endowed with higher emotional intelligence.

According to Robert Provine (2), laughter, besides producing great aerobic benefits, is a social activity—you do not usually laugh alone— that allows us to connect with other people in a healthier and happier way. And being happier has many benefits (does anyone doubt it?)

  • Happy people relate better with others, which means they work better with colleagues, bosses, subordinates, customers, etc.
  • Happy people are more creative, because their mood makes them more responsive and allows them to have more and better ideas.
  • Happy people solve problems in a much more constructive way. They do not focus on blaming.
  • Happy people have more energy and are more motivated. Sure you’ve realized this one.
  • Happy people are more optimistic, and there are studies claiming that optimists are more productive and more successful in their lives (3).
  • Happy people learn faster, as a result of being more relaxed and open to new experiences.
  • Happy people make better decisions because they are not in crisis situations.

Curiously, some years ago Dr. Madan Kataria created a kind of laughter club in which, by doing a series of exercises, which consist primarily in laughing for the sake of laughing, participants manage to eliminate fears, concerns and stress. The basis of this experiment is that the brain does not distinguish whether you are laughing because of something or for no reason, but the consequences are almost the same.

In conclusion, doing what you like and being happy at work will contribute more to your productivity than any personal management tool you can use.

People who laugh are more creative and more productive. Those who laugh together can work better together. Happiness boosts creativity, productivity and collaboration.

Are you happy at work?

1 Happiness economics in reverse: Does happiness affect productivity?, (Daniel Sgroi, 2010)

2 Laughter: A Scientific Investigation, (Robert Provine, 2001)

3 Learned Optimism (Martin Seligman, 1998)

Francisco Sáez

Francisco is the founder and CEO of FacileThings. He is also a Software Engineer who is passionate about personal productivity and the GTD philosophy as a means to a better life.

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