I have two name tags that are identical except for one thing: the job title.
One says CEO & Owner; the other says Pretty Cool Boss Man. I can’t think of a time when I’ve worn the first one, though I keep it around just in case.
Why don’t I ever wear it? Honestly, because if someone needs for me to have a stuffy job title before we can work together, we probably aren’t going to be able to work together anyway.
At T&S, we like to say that we take our work seriously, but we don’t take ourselves too seriously. We definitely think we’re capable, and we can do some really impactful, meaningful work with our clients, including nonprofits and churches.
But we like to joke around and don’t feel like being super formal will help us do our jobs any better. In fact, there’s research (and even a whole book!) on why humor and levity are valuable in the workplace. It’s called <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Levity-Effect-Why-Pays-Lighten/dp/0470195886″ target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow noopener”>The Levity Effect</a>, and I recommend it if you’re curious about why more humor in the office is a good idea.
If you aren’t with me so far, I probably won’t be able to convince you why seriousness is overrated. But here’s why I think that’s true.
There are plenty of things in life and in work that are very serious. But for your sanity’s sake, you need a balance between serious things and things that are funny and light-hearted. Also, people tend to like you more when you’re able to joke about yourself at least a little.
Life is temporary, and you definitely could get bogged down with all the serious challenges, issues, and worries at work and at home. But is that really how you want to spend your energy?
I think if you can let go of the seriousness when it’s not necessary, that gives you a way healthier balance. And you’ll have energy left for when you do need to be serious, because there are times when that’s appropriate.
So while I do try to be serious when it’s appropriate, I spend a lot more time injecting levity into situations! I like to think it helps everyone else take themselves a little less seriously—and at least it always means I’m having a good time!