Who doesn’t like to be funny? Who doesn’t like the image of a crowd surrounding them, laughing with them, catering a lot of attention to them and waiting for their every word to split into a chuckle of laughter. We have always maintained humor as an extraordinary talent capable of steering a conversation into a desired direction or even changing the tone and note of the crowd surrounding you. Humor without doubt is one of the most powerful tools in communication and there is no wonder that these comedians are paid so high!
1) WHY DO YOU WANT TO BE FUNNY?
Well, like always, we start with the one basic question as – WHY DO YOU WANT TO DO IT? What is it that you are trying to achieve from this? Do you want to be the centre of attraction? Do you want to steer the conversation from an utterly boring one to a sensation? Do you want to send in a subtle message through humour and make people think without imposing them to? Or do you just want to have fun? What is the real purpose behind this?
2) THE UNTOLD REASONS
“Well of course I love to be the centre of attraction, I love people looking at me in anticipation to burst into laughter, I love the feeling of a loud chuckle because of every word I say”
Is this one of the reasons why you want to be funny? Well! If that is the case, you might want to ask yourself a couple more questions
3) TO WHAT EXTENT ARE YOU WILLING TO GO TO MAKE PEOPLE LAUGH
Well! If you are trying to be the comedian, I am sure that the answer is to every extent possible. That’s the spirit, and it is the way to go, Kudos! But if you are looking at being a smart conversationalist and are looking at using humor in a regular social set up, I am sure you are looking at a simple reason as to lighten the conversation or steer the conversation into a different mode or break the ice and make the other person feel comfortable. In other words, you are looking at reasons more subtle to make people laugh and it is a great way of bringing control into the conversation.
4) HOW DO YOU WANT TO BE FUNNY?
You got to define who you are going to be. You got to know what you are aiming at, either a Charile Chaplin or a stand up comedian, both of them have their own styles and their own type of audience as well. It depends on what message you want to send to the people, whether you are a clown or whether you are someone who is known to have a good sense of humor and the office meetings with you are fun and enjoyable.
5) WHO DO YOU MAKE YOUR JOKE ON?
Well if you are looking at humor as something to improve the level of your conversation and you are being a smart communicator, it certainly becomes important as to what your subject is going to be. More often than not it is easy to find a simpleton on whom we can base the jokes on. Even though the natural instinct is to make fun of that person and it does sound funny at the start, do note that it opens a possibility of a judgement against you. If you are making fun of the weak and less capable, it doesn’t send across a great image of you. Know that if you are taking the way of humor for your conversation, it comes along with a few strings attached as well.
6) JOKES ON YOURSELF?
The safest way to show your great sense of humor is the conversations which are neutral and safe and the ones which don’t open you up to a wider range of judgements. However if you are thinking of taking it a notch ahead and use the demeaning ones, make sure that you use it on yourself. Make fun of yourself, your actions, your mistakes. It doesn’t show how weak you are, on the contrary it shows that you have the ability to laugh at your own mistakes and you have outgrown them. And when you talk freely about your flaws it makes the connection that much easier.
Everyone can make fun of a simpleton, but to make fun of yourself takes some real guts!
7) THE TONE!
Humor, singing, stage show everything looks at one commonality in communication, the variation in your tone. If you are going at it in the same note, it is very easy to get people to sleep. That was never your intention, find a way if you can modulate your tone, esp when you are using it for humor, it produces a fantastic impact on the listener
8) KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
Pick your moment, pick your words and pick your audience as well. You cannot go to a political meeting and make fun of a stupid policy and tell them how it has hurt people. You got to be a little clever, know your audience
Again, it seems like a very easy thing to do – to spread rumors about someone for the sake of a laughter or two. But mind you, it does come back to bite you in the wrong place and when it does, it does bite very hard. Steer away from negative humor as much as possible, the ones on caste, politics, race, color are a serious no no. You don’t want to be known as a person with bad humor, you need to establish some class into it.
10) MIMICKING SOMEONE WHO IS NOT AROUND
You have got a great talent, you can mimick people and that is a fantastic thing to use in a communication. But please don’t use it to make fun of others when they are not with you. I had a friend who constantly did that and it didn’t matter much when he did it in front of me, but when he did it behind my back, I was filled with such hatred that even today, I think before I communicate with him. You don’t want to be that guy, it is in fact a cheaper sense of humor and you should steer away from it.
11) THE CHANGE OF SUBJECT!
If you find your audience hooked to a particular subject, the natural tendency is to stick to something which has worked well and you feel like going on in the same route since you have hit a success point there. But make sure that you mix and match, a great sense of humor doesn’t naturally happen if you are focused on only one area!
12) MAKING FUN OF PHYSICAL APPEARANCE
If you make fun of someone’s behavior, it is ok, people don’t usually get very sensitive about that. But if you make fun of something integral to a person like his looks, his character or his abilities, then you are headed for some trouble. It is good to be funny but it is better to know your limits lest you want to make a sworn enemy out of him
13) MAKING FUN OF EVERYONE ELSE EXCEPT YOU!
I have met a few people who are undoubtedly funny but after a few minutes with them, you feel that you are amidst a highly egoistic person. There is not much wrong with their sense of humor, they are funny alright but they don’t know that while trying to be so, they are bringing others down just to elevate their importance and it works in a horribly wrong and opposite way. If you are making fun of someone else, be a BIGGER man and make fun of yourself too. Infact do more of that and you earn better respect than mere laughter.
I agree that it is not the easiest thing to think about every little word you say, and I strongly discourage the same too. It is impossible to think before you speak any word and rightly so, humor like anything else has to be natural and has to follow its own course or it doesn’t make much sense or difference to the listener