Laughter is a powerful thing. Must people see laughter as a response to hearing something funny. When we hear a joke, we laugh. Laughter can unite people and create connections between people from any background. Laughter can heal the heart and the mind. However, laughter isn’t always what it may seem.
A new study shows that in the world of dating and new social interactions, laughter isn’t always what it seems to be. In this new study, many women admit to using laughter as a defense mechanism. The women surveyed say that when they are on a first date, they often use laughter as a way to placate their male counterpart. Even when the jokes and stories are not funny, many women say that they laugh so their new date doesn’t get upset. How can laughter stem from a feeling of being uncomfortable?
The Laugh Lie
The long and short of it is that some men make women uncomfortable with the things that they say and the jokes they attempt to make. When a man makes an inappropriate joke, women are more likely to laugh, even when they find the joke or comment unfunny and offensive. This is because they feel unsafe and uncomfortable and are just hoping to keep the inappropriate jokester from becoming upset.
When it comes to the tenets of Humourology, making inappropriate jokes that make people uncomfortable isn’t just threatening, it is bad for business. Whether you are injecting humour on a first date or in the boardroom, it is vital that you learn how to use humour in a way that is endearing, not endangering.
Kindness is key
Humour can be a valuable tool to help you connect with others. However, if your humour does not come from a place of kindness, then it may not be as connective as you think. Whether making a joke at dinner or during your after-dinner speech, an unkind joke can turn your audience against you. While humour is a great way to bring people together, a mean or inappropriate joke is the fastest way to turn your friends to foes. Approach each joke with kindness and you are sure to connect with your comedy.
Dr Phil Hammond, famous for his TV shows and books and stand-up comedy with a medical angle says,
“Compassion is key in healthcare and just the gentle laying of a hand on somebody’s shoulder or their arm can make a huge difference and you can’t do that via a video link. But the bedside manner is still important. People remember
kindness. If you’ve ever had bad news, you remember how it was broken to you and if it was done kindly, you never forget, if it was done harshly, you never forgive. Those moments really, really matter.”
Know your Audience
While gallows humour and edgy jokes may bring your mates to tears, it may not be appropriate for every situation. It is important to understand your audience and listen before you try to make them laugh. Whether delivering a talk to your employees or bolstering up your banter on a date, knowing your audience is key. Make jokes that are likely to endear you to your audience and you will see how valuable humour can be. Poke fun at an inappropriate topic and you will see just how uncomfortable the wrong kind of comedy can make those around you.
A Sense of Humour Should Show your Humanity
When we share a laugh with others we can connect on a human level. When showing your sense of humour it is vital to try and share a smile and not force a laugh. Sometimes listening with a caring ear can show others that your sense of humour is something that they can connect with. The next time you give a speech or meet someone new, do your best to evoke a joke that is endearing and not off putting. Uncomfortable laughter may be more detrimental to your human connection than a silent room. Listen to understand and you and your audience will laugh the night away.
See you next Tuesday,