Ask anybody that knows me and they'll tell you I'm a bit of a silly person. It's not that I can't take things seriously; I take serious things seriously. Every other moment I try to make people, including myself, laugh or smile.
I think it's important not to take things too seriously and lead life with a certain amount of lightness, wherever possible.
We're all born with a sense of wonder and the willingness to try things out and have fun. Kids aren't afraid of being open and vulnerable, to seem out of place, or not meet people's expectations on how we behave. I know of several occasions where I thoroughly embarrassed my parents by saying something out of place.
Somewhere along the way, maybe in school or at work, we become too aware of how others view us. We fear that someone might get the wrong impression of us. If we made a stupid joke we'd be perceived as lacking in skill or attention. As if having fun, somehow means you're an irresponsible, talentless loon! You can cure cancer AND make knock-knock jokes!
Having a good time and being in a good mood leads to improved productivity. Getting yourself into a good mood before you start work is therefore important. Here's what I do: every day on the walk from the bus to my desk I blast a playlist full of energizing power walk songs and do a power dancewalk to my office. By the time I sit down, I'm in a great mood and ready to punch the day square in the jaw.
Being silly is also great for helping others. If you take a photo of yourself making a ridiculous face and send it to a friend wishing them a nice day, I bet you it will put a smile on their face. Unless you have terribly dull friends, in which case you can tweet at me @bkkkk with the hashtag #JayIsMySillyFriend.
Being silly can also help you develop a sense of self-compassion. In order to do something silly, you have to be able to cut yourself some slack. To know that it's OK to screw up. The world will not fall apart because you lose a little control.
Of course there is a time and a place for anything. Don't walk around like a dinasour during a big meeting with the CEO. If you do though, please record it and send me the footage. Thanks.
In the spirit of spreading the gift that is silliness, here is are a few things you can incorporate into your life to have a little fun:
- When you walk into a packed elevator, enter the elevator but DON'T turn around to face the door. Simply stay there looking at people. Make sure to smile otherwise it seems hostile.
- At a train station face the tracks and start to wave as a train goes by. You'll surprise whoever's on the other side once the train makes it trough the station. Again make sure to smile; don't be creepy.
- You can also pull the above while you're on the train, car or bus while looking out. For extra silliness pull a scary/stupid face. On-lookers will be thoroughly confused.
- In an airport with travelators, due a jaunty walk in the incorrect direction. Make sure to not incovenience people. Don't be a jerk!
- If you're in an office with cubicles, make sure to deploy the fake escalator bit on your way to the water-cooler.
- Figure out which silly face is your favourite (examples below) and deploy it whenever possible.
If you have any more silly public/private bits please leave them in the comment below.
Have a great day. Until Next Time.
-- Jay Blanco