A time to laugh: the gift of humor


Today, we look at the fifth of The 10 Greatest Gifts principles outlined by Steven W. Vannoy in his 1994 book.  You will recall that we examined “the gift of balance” the last time.  These principles also apply very well to adults working in the business world and can help us work better with others and understand, for ourselves, how we can be most productive and effective in every walk of life.

What is the principle of the gift of humor?  Vannoy defines it like this:

“Not teasing, not taunting someone because they’re different or less powerful, but a genuine expression of joy at the pleasures and ironies and foibles of life.”

Most people underestimate the value and power of a good sense of humor. One of our colleagues recently mentioned to me that he obtained a job in a competitive process once simply because he showed a sense of humor during the interviews.  When you show a sense of humor, you show your humanity and earn credibility (assuming the humor is appropriate).

Don’t feel you need to be serious in every moment in every situation. Don’t be afraid to exhibit your true personality.  Showing a sense of humor demonstrates that you want to be relevant and connect with others.  Following are a few thoughts that might help you learn more about this important attribute (note that all of these are anonymous, unless otherwise stated):

  • Don’t worry if plan A fails, there are 25 more letters in the alphabet.
  • I’m not clumsy! The floor just hates me, the table and chairs are bullies, and the walls get in my way.
  • Doing nothing is hard, you never know when you’re done.
  • If you’re hotter than me, then that means I’m cooler than you.
  • My friend, remember that without stupidity there wouldn’t be intelligence, and without ugliness there wouldn’t be beauty, so the world needs you after all.
  • Stop texting me in the middle of texting you… now I have to change my text.


  • Always remember you’re unique, just like everyone else. – Alison Boulter
  • Hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance? – Edgar Bergen
  • My cell phone is acting up, I keep pressing the home button but when I look around, I’m still at work.
  • There is a fine line between fishing and just standing on the shore like an idiot. – Steven Wright
  • A joke is a very serious thing. – Winston Churchill
  • There is no better moment to postpone something you don’t want to do other than right now.


  • I just wanted you to know that somebody cares. Not me, but somebody does.


Enjoy the day! Find something (or someone) that makes you smile.


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