When speaking to Brenda Jones, an Academic Support Coordinator at a university, on my “Empowering Women in Educational Leadership” September 20th episode, she said that one of the most essential skill a leader needs is to “find the funny.” Let’ see why humor is so important for women in leadership!
In the high-pressure world of leadership, where responsibilities are endless and challenges are many, it’s easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle. For women in leadership, this can sometimes be magnified by societal expectations and gender biases. However, one weapon in the arsenal to combat the stress and the weight of it all is surprisingly simple: humor. “Find the funny,” as they say, and you’ll find the balance and strength you need to thrive.
The Science Behind Laughter
Laughter, beyond just being enjoyable, offers tangible health benefits. It releases endorphins, our body’s feel-good chemicals, which can ease pain and promote a sense of well-being. Moreover, laughing has been shown to reduce the level of stress hormones. For leaders, especially women juggling both professional and personal pressures, a dose of daily laughter can be the best medicine.
Laughter Breaks Down Barriers
In a corporate setting, it’s often the more human moments that people remember and resonate with. When a leader can find humor in situations, or even in themselves, it fosters a sense of relatability. This establishes trust and can even inspire loyalty among team members. It says, “Yes, I have a prominent position, but I’m human just like you.”
For women, societal pressures often dictate an unspoken rule: to be perfect. However, let’s be real; nobody is. When a woman in leadership can laugh at her own mistakes, it not only humanizes her but also sets a precedent for the team. It sends the message that it’s okay to make mistakes as long as we learn and grow from them.
Being able to find humor, even in challenging situations, is a sign of resilience. For women leaders facing the unique challenges that come with breaking ceilings and navigating traditionally male-dominated environments, resilience is key. And what better way to bolster that resilience than with a hearty chuckle now and then?
Fostering Creativity and Innovation
Humor has a way of freeing our minds, allowing us to think outside the box. When leaders encourage a culture of humor and light-heartedness, it can spur creativity. Ideas flow more freely, collaboration becomes more enjoyable, and the workplace turns into a hub of innovation.
Life, with all its intricacies and challenges, will always test our mettle, especially for those at the helm of leadership. For women leaders, “finding the funny” is not just a quirky phrase. It’s a philosophy, a strategy, and a vital tool to navigate the challenges with grace, humility, and strength. So, the next time you feel the weight of leadership heavy on your shoulders, remember to find the funny. Your mind, body, team, and organization will thank you for it.
I encourage you to “find the funny” every day. For guidance along your journey, reach out to me for a free consultation at www.drstephanieduguid.com. Find the funny in your life!