Humour signals generosity

The most popular online course in the world is Learning how to Learn. Its instructors are Barbara Oakley and Terrence Sejnowski, and zombies are their teaching assistants. Here’s one of them reviewing his things to-do . 8-1_Zombie_task_list.jpg

Source: ©2014 Kevin Mendez

To be humourous is difficult. As any stand-up comedian would tell you, it takes hours of practice to pull off a joke that looks spontaneous. The same applies for pulling off a carefully scripted joke in a classroom, or to design an online course featuring sublime wordplay from realm of the undead. One reason their course is so popular is because the instructors have worked hard to make it funny.

Everybody loves to laugh. Every bit of laughter bathes our brain with a spurt of feel good chemicals. When somebody is humourous, it shows that they have put in some effort to make you feel better, and that they care enough about you to have done that.

This is why humour, especially in places where it isn’t a requirement, is a sign of generosity.

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