Learn to Laugh at Yourself when It Is Called for
It is hard to overstate the importance of being able to laugh at yourself. People who can do this are generally more optimistic than those who cannot.
Optimistic personalities go far in the Financial Services industry.
I have seen a lot of Advisors fail over the years, but I have never seen an optimistic Advisor fail. Being more cheerful and less serious is a great survival technique.
Cheerfulness helps us cope.
We all face rejection and denial on a daily basis. Burnout is a very real possibility. To be able to see humor in one’s plight is essential for one’s mental well-being. Our business is engaging people and influencing their behavior.
An Advisor who is upbeat and in a good mood will engage people far better than an Advisor with a negative attitude. Most folks I know go out of their way to avoid negative people.
Another reason to laugh at ourselves is to defuse the tension that is so prevalent in our business.
As well, undervaluing ourselves, making ourselves the butt of our own jokes, helps us keep our egos in check. Sufficient modesty will serve to keep us from getting overly confident in the good times. Humor and humility go hand-in-hand.
The ability to laugh at yourself makes you more attractive.
People love it when you know your own weaknesses and you are not afraid to point them out.
Perhaps the best thing about being able to laugh at yourself is that the very act can build your self-esteem.
It helps you accept yourself as you are. We all know what it’s like to radiate the appearance of confidence while feeling inadequate on the inside. Once you accept yourself and appreciate yourself for who you are, you will like yourself a whole lot better.
Laughing at yourself does not mean beating yourself up.
Treat yourself kindly. Lois McElravy conducts humor workshops. She also is dealing with the complexities of a brain injury as the result of a car accident. ‘Finding humor in stressful moments allows you to separate who you are from what you do,’ says McElravy. ‘You may have done something stupid, but you’re not a stupid person.’
Sooner rather than later, you’re going to have a bad month.
At some point, a client is going to transfer her account. You’re going to ask somebody to take action and he will say no. You’ll chase a prospect far too long. An investment you recommend will underperform.
Find the humor. It’s there.
You didn’t fail. You goofed. You tripped over a bump in the road to success. Don’t dwell and don’t stew. Laugh it off and readjust your attitude. Work hard to make sure it doesn’t happen again. Call your best friend and share a laugh.
Humor offsets stress.
It is your shield. It is therapeutic. Getting rid of anger and anxiety is a skill you can learn and perfect to keep yourself on an even keel. And an even keel is essential in this business.
Nobody is better at maintaining an even keel than Charlie Brown. In his immortal words, “I’ve developed a new philosophy . . . I only dread one day at a time.”