I think most people love having fun, it makes us feel great and uplifted. There have been many studies done to prove that humor is very good for our physical well-being. One study done with cancer patients was on the effects of watching funny movies while getting chemotherapy. Even though they were very ill and many in pain their overall affect was cheerier than those that didn’t watch the films.
A study done by Dr. Lee Berk of Loma Linda School of Public Heath, in California, shows that laughing effects the immune system making it grow stronger with increased activity of T-cells, natural killer cells and antibodies. Research has also shown that laughing reduces stress, high blood pressure, and oxygenates our blood, which increases energy and relaxes our muscles.
With the decline of Americans being satisfied with their job (80%, at last count, are unhappy with their employment) you would think more employers would be looking for ways to “lighten up” the workplace?
Many employers are of the mindset that if their employees are laughing and enjoying themselves at work then the work must not be getting done. When, in fact, people work better when they are interacting and enjoying some levity at work.
Just take a look at the management practices of Google, Evernote and Best Buy (which are just a few among the many) that are of the belief that humor, enjoyment and just plain fun make employees happier and businesses more profitable.
In the article linked below, Dr. David Abramis at Cal State Long Beach has studied fun at work for years. He’s discovered that people who have fun on the job are more creative, more productive, better decision-makers, and get along better with co-workers. They also have fewer absentee, late, and sick days than people who aren’t having fun.
There are many benefits to bringing humor to the workplace, take the challenge and see what good spirits you can raise at work today. Oh, and please share them with me because I am always looking for new things to bring levity to our workplace.