ROL–Making the Case for Laughter

By Ann Elliott

happy people
In our current economic situation anger, blame, hostility and fear are prevailing and pervasive emotions for many people. There is plenty of angst to go around. With news 24/7 that provides up to the minute reports on the plunging stock market, unemployment, political scandals, and home foreclosures, no wonder we are anxious.  To be sure we have plenty to deal with and so far as I can tell no one is untouched. Very few are getting out of this rough patch unscathed. “Money isn’t everything.  But it is reasonably close to oxygen.” The motivational icon, Zig Ziglar, was speaking to the Association of Community College Trustees at a regional convention in Biloxi (Mississippi Business Journal, June 22, 1998.) happy people Looking relentlessly on the dark side includes the following costs to us:
  • Angst is fueled and increases
  • Focus is in the wrong direction
  • Power gives way to helplessness
  • Health is at risk
  • Laughter and humor is replaced by frowns and ill tempers
Just when we need creativity, confidence, cooperation and action, we are spinning our wheels and digging a deeper hole. Use these four steps to make the most of today: 1.  Focus on what you can control–your thoughts, emotions and actions are completely guided and directed by you and only you. 2.  Do what you can do now–For example, a restaurant owner told me last week he discovered he could reduce his heating bill by turning the thermostat up one hour later at the start of the day and turning the thermostat down one hour earlier at the end of the day.  By reducing the heating for two hours a day, he saves $1700 a month in heating costs without reducing the quality of service or food that his customers have come to expect. 3.  Look for the humor in the darkest circumstances– remember that every situation has two sides. 4.  Laugh out loud everyday–have a laugh-a-long even if it’s just with me, myself and I. Your ROL includes but is not limited to….. Requires $0 to get in.  Bernie Madoff couldn’t offer you a better deal. Contains no sugar, trans fats, saturated fats, or calories.  It is guilt free. Is contagious and spreads rapidly.  Incubation period is instantaneous. Is readily available and in unlimited supply. Increases your creativity and sense of well being. Produces no hangovers and morning after regrets. Improves cardiovascular health as confirmed by studies at University of Maryland Medical Center.  Check it out. Attracts others who can see humor and find something to laugh about. Repels sourpusses. Keep this in mind. Does laughing seem out of character and inappropriate in these challenging times? Because you are laughing doesn’t mean you don’t understand the seriousness of our challenges or that you are delusional. Laughing is a bona fide certified method to take the edge off these uncertain times.  Why not invest in a sure thing?

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Ann Elliott

Ann Elliott, founder of The Berkana Company, excels at leadership strategy

An expert at helping business leaders enjoy more profits and improved productivity with less stress, she blends fun and excitement with executive coaching and training to yield results for her clients.

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