Along with generosity, confidence and physical attractiveness, humor is a trait that is usually highly desired among couples. Having good humor can bring us incredible benefits not only with how we feel but with social relationships. The problem is that being funny is not something we can force; if we try too much, we create an awkward and annoying environment. We have all seen these people that constantly make others laugh, these are the people we want to be with because we know we will have a good time, they do this without any effort, is it a magical power or did they learn it?
That’s why in this blog post I will let you know how you can add humor and fun to your conversations, because the more fun and enjoyable your conversations with others are, the longer they will want to spend time with you. Remember, people will usually not remember what you said, but they will remember how you made them feel.
First thing first
A good sense of humor cannot be forced; if you do, it will play against you. Take jokes for example, when you are trying too hard to make a joke or when you overdue a joke and nobody laughs, you are missing one the most important elements of good humor: the element of surprise (one of the main features of good humor), what happens is this: you tell a forced joke or you become repetitive with the jokes, an award laugh happens or worse, nobody laughs, you feel ridiculous and stay quiet so you don’t screw up again which makes your level of shyness higher.
Good humor is based on 4 essential principles:
1. It REALLY depends on your emotional state
It all starts with your emotional state! If you’re in the middle of a conversation and you are feeling confident and happy, you are much more likely to be funny than when you are nervous or sad. Why? Because you stop thinking so much (filtering) about what’s the best next thing you need to say which will give you more natural ideas and not overthink so much: “Is this going to be funny or not?!”
You’re probably thinking, “Vanessa what if I do if I don’t feel confident?what if I feel nervous?!” this, my love, is exactly why we must work on managing our emotions, the key here is to learn how to disassociate or isolate from our emotions so they won’t affect us so much, this is not something you can accomplish today or in a month, this is something that takes time and patience but it is the only way of not letting our emotions cause so much distress on us to the point that our social life is affected. One of the biggest problems we can have in our life is lack of confidence: the more self-conscious and insecure we are, the less funny we will be.
2. Say what YOU think is funny
The second principle of good humor is to say what you think is funny. Research says that acting natural is crucial to having a good sense of humor, and you see this in comedians, they will talk about things that are funny to them, at times you even see them laughing by themselves because they think its funny! They are not worried if you think is funny or not, and this is exactly what makes them successful! I’m sure at some point in the past you have said a joke that was not funny even to you! In this case, you need to think if YOU like the type of humor you are using and find one that you enjoy, maybe you like imitating or telling stories. The point here is that when we lose genuineness by saying things that you think will only make others laugh, we usually fail at being funny.
4. You will not always be funny
OK, let’s get something clear, I am not asking you to work on becoming a professional stand up comedian, the point here is to learn how to improve your sense of humor but be true to who you are, work on becoming a better version of YOU. In real life, humor is something very personal, what is funny to you, might not be funny to me. Humor is subjective, some people might think your funny, some might not; we must learn that no matter which reaction we get from others, we should still continue working on our sense of humor; in other words, don’t be so tough on yourself, it is impossible to be funny all the time and you don’t have too!
On the other hand, I do think it is important to learn to be careful with our sense of humor. If you are the type of person that uses others as the center of your joke; be aware that person might take it as an offense. I don’t agree with making humor hurtful or disrespectful, humor should make us feel good, there is a very fine line between funny and insulting. When you are mean, when you make fun of people for things they can’t change or control, you are not being funny, you will look insecure and weak. Now that we got this out of the way, there is a super important aspect of having good humor:
5. Laugh at yourself
I cannot stress this enough! The easiest way to have good humor is to lighten up and laugh at yourself! Sadly, many people believe that they should always project perfection and self-confidence and not only do they end up doing the opposite, but they are usually very unhappy.
When you laugh at yourself:
-You appear less uptight and more confident, you show people that your flaws or mistakes don’t bother you.
-Ability to better connect with others because you appear humbler and more approachable.
One was of being funny while laughing at yourself is by being sarcastic about your flaws or mistakes. Lets say that you are selling a product to get slimmer and look healthier and in the middle of the speech you say, “This amazing product reduces fat; of course, I do not need it, but I can guarantee that it works!” the key here is to be sarcastic so while you say this you are grabbing the sides of your waist and saying, “Hey, I don’t understand why you’re laughing!”, this along with your nonverbal communication will usually cause people to laugh and lighten up around you; you will appear more confident and approachable!
6. The essence of good humor is creativity
The key here is Spontaneous Creativity. What this means is that you say something that is not expected at that moment but ends up fitting perfectly, it’s adding an element of surprise and creativity. Again, not something you will learn from one day to another, it takes practice and learning. What I can tell you is that research has shown that you are most creative when you are relaxed; think about it, don’t you get your best ideas when you are driving or taking a shower?!
There are two ways in which we are much more likely to use our spontaneous or natural creativity:
-When we are relaxed
-When we are present
When we are relaxed and present during a conversation, our subconscious helps us by sending us amazing ideas. The issue is that we are paying so much attention to what we are going to say and how we are feeling (our consciousness) that we become unaware of our subconscious.
Here are 3 techniques to start practicing your Spontaneous Creativity:
When you hear comedians, they are full of exaggerations, they will basically give you a disproportionate relationship between two things, this will usually make people smile! If you compare this to normal or neutral communication, “I saw a big cat” it is a normal sentence in which you will not find any humor.
Compare things that come to mind by adding unknown relationships. When you are explaining something, look for similarities between two things, the key here is to exaggerate (which adds the previous element).
Nonverbal communication is very important when having good humor! Funny people not only look natural and confident, but they use their nonverbal communication to look funny; for instance, you will see funny faces or even laughing at themselves (For some reason I find this last one very funny) they even have a way of looking funny while talking seriously!
Immerse yourself in humor
I have given you several tips to improve your sense of humor but let me remind you that this is something that takes practice, repetition, and patience. The real key to becoming funnier is to train your creativity so you can look spontaneous, the more you do it, the better you get. If you are surrounded by a serious and monotonous environment you will hardly learn any tricks; so immerse yourself in humor, watch comedians, funny movies, funny TV series, read funny books and try to find friends that find the fun part of life!