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Humor is power. Done right, it is the fastest way to build trust, create a common bond, and turn around a difficult situation. Neuro-humorist, nurse, and Forbes Books author Karyn Buxman shares her research in how humor impacts the brain and affects leaders, employees, and customers. Discover how seeing funny beats being funny and the five humor landmines to avoid to make humor work safely.

Karyn Buxman

Karyn Buxman

Neurohumorist | TEDx speaker

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Disrupting with High Performance Humor

Karyn Buxman

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Mark S A Smith: My guest today is Karyn Buxman, who is a neurohumorist. What the heck, you might is, is a neurohumorist? It’s somebody who understands high performance humor and the impact on the human brain. She is a research-based humorist about to release her book, published by Forbes, Funny Means Money: Mastering High Performance Humor. She is a National Speakers Association Speaker Hall of Fame, a very rare award in the industry. Welcome, Karyn Buxman.

Karyn Buxman: Thank you, Mark. Oh my gosh, you make me sound so good.

Mark S A Smith: That’s because you are-

Karyn Buxman: Your voice is chocolate.

Mark S A Smith: Thank you. You are so good. And I’ve known Karyn for 25 years. And it’s always been such a delight, every conversation is a massive insight. She helps me be funnier. Let’s talk about high performance humor. Why is that so important when it comes to disrupting relationships?

Karyn Buxman: Humor is such a powerful tool. This is my mantra. Humor is power. Humor is power. Humor is power. And one of the functions of humor is to strengthen relationships and rapport. And done well, it can certainly build those relationships, make them stronger. Done incorrectly, oh my gosh, now you are blowing things up. You are being inappropriate in terms of disruption. And what I love to show high performers is how they can use it appropriately to strengthen those relationships, but avoid the pitfalls. Because if you do it wrong, the relationship may be damaged, or it may be irreparable.

Mark S A Smith: Indeed. Bad humor is not a good idea for relationships. So, part of the ways that humor improves relationships is because, first of all, where we laugh, we agree.

Karyn Buxman: Yes. Jeffrey Gitomer, one of our colleagues, said that you want to get your prospect to laugh, because laughter is tacit approval. And in my research, this is what I’m finding, time and time again. That people who intentionally use humor … And you can do it unintentionally, that’s something that I think a lot of great salespeople, they are funny people, they use humor a lot. But what I love teaching about high performance humor is taking people from good to great. This can be one of the most powerful competitive edges that your listeners could give themselves. If they took the time and the effort to use humor with the desired outcome, consistently, and over an extended period of time. These are the things that we measure when we are looking at what is high performance humor.

Mark S A Smith: Indeed. Let’s talk a little more about why use humor. You just gave me a whole litany of reasons.

Karyn Buxman: Yeah.

Mark S A Smith: And let’s dig in even a little bit deeper. I think that one of the most important aspects of humor is it can accelerate trust.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And trust is, without a doubt, underlying to leadership, and sales, and virtually any persuasive methodology that you use. And so, humor can give us the opportunity of accelerating that trust. Why is that?

Karyn Buxman: There’s two reasons. One is the likeability factor. People who use humor appropriate can build those relationships. I love looking at humor as WD-40. It’s a social lubricant and it can smooth out those rough spots. But it’s also like duct tape, and of course, those are the two things you want in your tool box. Because the duct tape brings people closer together. So people who are likable, these are the ones that you are more likely to follow, these are the ones that you are more likely to buy from.

The other way, though, that we look at building trust is, humor is a wonderful way to show your vulnerability. There are different kinds of humor styles. There’s one kind of humor style where it’s getting everybody on board. It’s the inside humor. It’s all about us and our department, our team, whatever. There is humor that is targeting another person. And this can be mild targeting, it could be teasing, or kind of just pushing some buttons, to get somebody a little bit more motivated. Or, in terms of a weapon, it can be used to totally annihilate a person, cut them off at the knees.

But another type of humor is self-effacing humor, which is humor that’s used to build yourself up in the eyes of another by showing your vulnerability. And when leaders can see how to do this artfully, and do it well, by showing your own vulnerability through humor this makes the other person think, oh, this person has shown their vulnerability. They are safer. It’s okay with me to share this information. So for instance, if you are somebody in the finance world and you are wanting people to come to you and share their financial portfolio or their money picture, which in turn includes their relationships and even their health, why would you expect them to be totally vulnerable if you haven’t created that sense of trust? If you haven’t created those emotional deposits, before you’re seeking a withdrawal?

Mark S A Smith: Absolutely true. Now, you said a number of things that I think are really important, I want to nail down for our listener.

Karyn Buxman: All right.

Mark S A Smith: First of all is that humor increases likeability.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And anybody who has read anything about Robert Cialdini knows that likeability is one of the six elements of persuasion.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And it’s very powerful. And the reason why is because we will do things for people we like that we would never do for people that we don’t like. And I think aspect of vulnerability becomes very important because that’s part of humility. Vulnerability and humility are attached at the hip. Humility is frequently cited as the reason why people rapidly trust somebody. It’s also a fundamental essence of leadership, specifically around the concept of presence. And you also added a really important element to that as well, which is a topper. The insider humor says, I know you.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And so it amplifies the relationship by using that insider humor in a way that says, we are from the same tribe, you can trust us. And our brain goes, oh, I recognize you. You’re safe.

Karyn Buxman: Right. One of us. One of us.

Mark S A Smith: Just with those three elements, anybody who wants to improve your trust, and improve those three aspects, humor is a tool that allows you to intentionally do that. And before we dig into how and what high performance humor happens to do and be, let’s talk about the brain chemistry of humor.

Karyn Buxman: Yeah.

Mark S A Smith: I love brain chemistry. Ahh.

Karyn Buxman: I do too. I do too. And this really excites me. Because what we have known for over a decade is that humor is a whole brain activity. We’ve known for quite some time that when you’re experiencing humor, you experience wit, which is the cognitive part, in the prefrontal cortex. You experience mirth, the emotional component, in the limbic system. And hopefully, you experience laughter, which is produced in the occipital lobe of the brain. In addition to all the different areas of the brain that are involved, now we also know the abundance of neurotransmitters that are released with humor, affecting every body system. In some of the studies and research and work that I’ve done, and a couple of the books that I’ve written, we look at how these neurotransmitters affect the immune system, the cardiovascular system, the nervous system. I wrote a book on humor for diabetics, which is called What’s So Funny About Diabetes? A whole load of information there that we don’t have time to go into, the cardiovascular system is another. And what we have found is that even these neurotransmitters have an effect at your DNA level. We’re talking epigenetics here, which disrupts your DNA. This disrupts how you might even be passing along your genes.

Mark S A Smith: Wow. Listener, the thing I want to point out to you is, epigenetics is the concept that your environment can change your DNA and how it expresses itself. And so, what Karyn is sharing with you is that humor actually makes your DNA better. It refines your DNA. It’s way better to laugh than to do anything else if you want to live a long and health lifespan, and more importantly, have children. That are going to be healthy.

Karyn Buxman: Definitely.

Mark S A Smith: The research around that is really stunning. And the thing that really is, to me, fascinating, is this concept the humor trigger, a cocktail of brain chemistry. It’s not just one thing, it’s many things, that have massive impact. It’s the reason why it works so well for what we’ve been talking about, building trust and showing vulnerability and showing liking. Really powerful stuff.

Karyn Buxman: One more brain element that I want to throw in, just because this is something that’s new. And this is something that we’ve only found in the last couple of years. I have a very dear friend who’s one of the leading psychoneuroimmunologists in the world, who studies humor. Dr. Lee Berk, who is up in Loma Linda. He did a study just a few years ago on the human brain, and studied it while these subjects were experiencing humor. What he found was that the subjects experienced gamma waves across their entire brain. Now, this is something that we weren’t even able to measure a decade or two ago, and we initially thought it was artifact. Now we understand with our digital technology that this is indeed a type of brain wave that’s very important. And the brain wave pattern that we see from people experiencing humor are the same brain wave patterns that we see from people who are practicing deep mindfulness and deep mediation over years.

Mark S A Smith: Wow. So that means going to the comedy club is about as good as meditating?

Karyn Buxman: I’m telling you, it’s a shortcut. It’s a shortcut. We can’t even imagine all of the ramification yet. People with these brain wave patterns experience being in the zone. They experience more creativity. They experience increased memory. Which is another study that was done, and shown that short-term memory was increased. So many incredible things that we’re finding with the brain, I just wanted everybody to jump on this bandwagon with me.

Mark S A Smith: All right, well let’s jump on the bandwagon. You have done some interesting research about high performance humor. Share with me some of what you’ve discovered. And how do we do this?

Karyn Buxman: Let’s look first, perhaps, at the effect of high performance humor on leadership. I think that this is so important, that people who are practicing humor are more likely to be advanced in their jobs. They’re more likely to get raises. In addition, they’re doing a better job of leadership, because that people that they’re leading are more engaged. They’re paying more attention. They’re remembering more. So, these kinds of things are so important to someone in leadership, regardless of whether that’s leadership in your corporation or leadership in your community, or leadership in your own family. In terms of salespeople, we have found that humor plays a role in every component of the sales process. Are you trying to get someone’s attention? Are you trying to stay top-of-mind? Are you trying to get someone to understand and remember the information that you’re giving them? How would you like to defuse conflict better? How would you like to smooth out the negotiation process? How would you like it to even make the closure more enjoyable? In my contracts, I have humorous things peppered throughout, so that people will continue to read, enjoy, and then you loop them back into the sales process again by staying top-of-mind.

So, what we found in high performance humor is that people who purposefully and intentionally use this will experience all of the benefits in these roles. And that we can help people move up. Here’s a big one< mark. They don’t have to be funny. This is one of the biggest pushbacks that I get from high performers initially, is, “Oh my gosh, but you don’t understand. I’m not funny.” My response is, great. Because you don’t have to be funny. You have to see funny. And the more you become a humor appreciator, not a humor initiator, but a humor appreciator, the more likely it is the being funny will fall into place. But even if it doesn’t, you can still get all of the benefits that I just told you.

Mark S A Smith: That’s great. I love that concept. You don’t have to be funny. But you do have to see funny.

Karyn Buxman: Yes. Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And then you have to point out the funny thing that you saw, and people are going to laugh, and you get the credit for being funny.

Karyn Buxman: Absolutely. Another pushback, people will say, but you don’t understand. There’s nothing funny happening in my life.

Mark S A Smith: Oh. You know, all you have to do is read Twitter. There’s plenty funny things happening, friends.

Karyn Buxman: Oh. What you and I understand is that, if that is your belief, then that is going to be your experience, right?

Mark S A Smith: Indeed. Yes.

Karyn Buxman: But if you flip that belief, and if you ask yourself, what am I missing? You start looking for it. Here’s another brain piece. The reticular activating system. It starts looking for things. It starts putting out this filter, and you start to find something. And it may be a while before you find another something. But now a process called Hebb’s Law, which is neurons that fire together wire together. And the more you practice this, the better you will become at it, before it just becomes a habit and not something you have to work at.

Mark S A Smith: It’s just like learning how to walk, or talk, or chew gum, or anything else.

Karyn Buxman: Exactly. Or drive, or anything else. Right, right, right.

Mark S A Smith: It reminds me of somebody coming up to me after a program, because I’m pretty funny. People tell me I’m funny.

Karyn Buxman: Yes, you are.

Mark S A Smith: There’s a lot of laughter in my shows. This guy came up to me afterward and says, Mark, you were so funny, I had a hard time keeping from laughing. His culture had prohibited laughter. All right, dude, thank you. Feel free to let it out.

Karyn Buxman: Well, you bring up an interesting point, because when I speak to groups internally, so frequently what I see is the audience watching the leader. And once the leader begins to laugh, now there’s tacit approval and the rest of them can laugh, but if the leader sits there with his arms crossed and a scowl on his face, I could throw money at them and pay them to laugh, and they wouldn’t until he will give the lead, and give the okay.

Mark S A Smith: Ah, Karyn, that’s the best idea I’ve gotten out of so many of these conversations. What that tells me is, I have got to prime the pump with the group leader.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: They have to be laughing. They have to okay to laugh with me early, before I even hit the stage.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And I think the same thing happens when were in sales meetings. You just have to make sure that whoever is running the show is laughing with you before you step up and deliver your presentation. Wow. That’s a big insight that a lot of people can make money from. That’s awesome. Thank you.

Karyn Buxman: Yes. You’re welcome.

Mark S A Smith: Carry on.

Karyn Buxman: In addition to the research on showing what people do right, one of the things that I have researched over the years is, what do people do wrong.

Mark S A Smith: Let’s hear it.

Karyn Buxman: And one of the things that I love is showing people five landmines. If you will learn these and you will embrace these, I give you a guarantee. You can avoid 98 percent of the foot in mouth, of humor blowing up in your face. The other two percent, we’ve all met the person who brings their own agenda. No matter what you say, you could be so careful, and this person is going to find a way to weave in their own agenda. That two percent, we don’t deal with that. But the other 98 percent, here are the five steps. I use an acronym to help you remember this. The word is BEAST. B-E-A-S-T.

Mark S A Smith: All right.

Karyn Buxman: Let’s look at each of those., B stands for Bond. Bond is your relationship with that other person. The number one mistake everybody makes, whether they’re a leaders, a salesperson, a stay-at-home mom, doesn’t matter. The number one mistake people make in general is we make an assumption that you and I are more alike that what we really are. And so, in terms of your communication, you make a lot of assumptions. And in terms of your humor, you make assumptions. Now, the good news is, if you have a really strong bond, your humor can be as risky as you want. Because if this has been your friend, like you and I for 25 years, if I put my foot in my mouth, you’re going to roll your eyes and go, too soon. And you and I will continue to have coffee, wine, and other fun times.

Mark S A Smith: Or I might say, not soon enough.

Karyn Buxman: There you go. There you go, I’ve got some stories about that too. But if this is a new client, or this is a new team member, or someone who is at an adjoining table, or on the other side of the table at your vendor booth, and you share humor that is inappropriate, now you have damaged this relationship. Or you may have ruined it altogether. So if you know the relationship with the other person, your humor can be riskier. If not, be safe. Use self-effacing humor. This is the safest form of humor that a high performer can use. Because if you’re making fun of yourself, you’re showing vulnerability. It’s safe. Were creating that authenticity, that likeability, and it’ll be great. So, Bond is the first.

Mark S A Smith: That’s brilliant.

Karyn Buxman: Thank you. E is Environment. And environment is anyone who hears, sees, or experiences your humor, whether they were the intended audience or not. Is this somebody at an adjacent table? Is this somebody on the other side of the curtain? Is this somebody who received the email that you sent to Greg, and he forwarded it to ten thousand of his friends, but it has your name in it? Another area that’s created a lot of challenge for people these days, social media. I spoke to a young professional in Chicago, and she had shared something on her Facebook page. Risky humor, she had the bond, because the people on her Facebook page were art of her tribe. But one of her tribe shared it with their Facebook page, and in that group was the young woman’s, one of her employers, a supervisor. Who saw that, notified her that this was not in alignment with company policy, and she lost her job over it.

Mark S A Smith: Oops.

Karyn Buxman: Oops.

Mark S A Smith: No joke is worth that.

Karyn Buxman: So, I tell people, think about where this might end up. And just use discernment. If you’re okay with it, great. You know, my background, years ago I used to speak a ton at healthcare groups. And nurses, EMTs, those kinds of people …

Mark S A Smith: And how perfect that we have the siren as you’re talking about that. That stays in the show.

Karyn Buxman: That’s my ride. For them, body fluids, death, and dismemberment. Nothing funnier, to them. They just like, make it sicker, make it sicker. And they tape these, they sell them. Am I okay with that escaping that environment? I’ve made the decision that yes, I’m willing to take that risk. But you have to decide for yourself, am I willing to take that risk. I’m not going to go into a lot of detail, but there’s somebody who was a politician who shared some humor with somebody that was very risky, and thought that he had the bond, thought that he had the environment. But didn’t realize that there was media near enough by to overhear. And boom, now it’s everywhere. So, that’s Environment.

Mark S A Smith: Indeed.

Karyn Buxman: A is Authenticity. Any leadership position, you need to be authentic. But what sometimes people forget is to be authentic in their humor as well. And one of the reasons people feel so uncomfortable is that they’re trying to be something that they’re not. And so, when I’m consulting with companies, and consulting with C-level folks who say, you know, I just, I can’t be funny, I say, you don’t have to be someone you’re not. Just be more of you. And if you have that authenticity, your humor will sell, and people will bite.

Mark S A Smith: I think it’s really important to point out that a lot of times, telling jokes creates inauthenticity in humor.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And that’s the reason why your see funny is the best possible humor. Because you’re going to see that through your eyes, which makes it automatically authentic. I don’t tell jokes.

Karyn Buxman: I don’t either.

Mark S A Smith: You don’t tell jokes.

Karyn Buxman: I don’t. It so funny, when people come up and say, tell me your favorite joke. It’s like, I don’t have any.

Mark S A Smith: But I think that’s a really important point. Just be more of you, not somebody else. Don’t try to recycle somebody else’s jokes and humor. Use your humor, your see funny.

Karyn Buxman: Right.

Mark S A Smith: I love it. What’s the S?

Karyn Buxman: S is Safety. And there’s two types of safety one is physical, one is emotional, there are great practical jokes. Steve Wozniak, oh my gosh. He loves practical jokes. And this is a way that he actually instills some of the creativity into the corporate culture that he’s in. And if a practical joke is done well, and nobody gets hurt, great. So, look at the physicality. But one of the things I hadn’t realized for many years, until people started asking me to address it to their companies and to their associations, was the emotional safety. And what we see more and more is people using humor to bully. People using humor as a weapon. If you ever hear someone say, what’s wrong, can’t you take a joke? Or, I was only joking. Then no joke was told, it was a weapon. And so, think about that. Can anybody be physically or emotionally hurt.

Mark S A Smith: I know you know the story about Alan Funt and Candid Camera, that great show-

Karyn Buxman: Oh yeah.

Mark S A Smith: Where they essentially would play practical jokes on strangers.

Karyn Buxman: Right, yes.

Mark S A Smith: And when the show first came out, people didn’t like it. Until they adjusted the show format to show people be let it on the joke.

Karyn Buxman: That is a great point.

Mark S A Smith: After Alan pointed the camera out to them and they were laughing at themselves, that’s when the show took off. So, what is T?

Karyn Buxman: T is Timing. People, when they think of the world of comedy, they think of timing in terms of, don’t step on your punchline, pause, all of that. And that’s true for somebody who’s really trying to do humor for entertainment. But for high performance humor, this is what I’m addressing. When we are young, most of our humor comes from joy and delight. But by the time we get to be adults, a good portion, if not the majority of our humor, comes from pain and discomfort. It might be ours or it might it be somebody else’s. But we’re not laughing about our big fat paycheck. We’re not laughing about having a great car. We’re laughing about the idiot that we were stuck behind in traffic who kep his left blinker on for 32 miles, you know, while you pull out your hair, those are the kinds of things. So, why is it funny? It’s not funny at the time, but when you can emotionally detach. How long does that take? It depends.

Mark S A Smith: That’s right. It depends. Too soon or not soon enough.

Karyn Buxman: It’s funny that you bring that up. This is something that happened during the last hurricane season. A lot of hurricane humor came out after Hurricane Harvey. You can tell when the healing begins, when people start seeing the humor in their situation. I was in conversation with ForbesBooks, and their office is in Charleston. And there was another hurricane potentially headed their way. And I said, you know, I send you humor a lot. I don’t want to be disrespectful, I don’t want to send it too soon, so tell me when you’re ready. And a group email came back and said, never too soon, fire away. Which gave me permission, then, to start sending them all of this hurricane humor, which they loved and shared, but I wanted to be careful, because if they were in fear, then it wasn’t going to work. And leaders need to know this, salespeople need to know this. If your other person is in fear about something, then it’s dicey to put humor in if they haven’t emotionally detached.

Mark S A Smith: This is really interesting, because this brings into play one of my favorite models, Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

Karyn Buxman: Absolutely.

Mark S A Smith: And what you’re telling me is, if somebody is no level one or level two of Maslow, humor’s not going to work.

Karyn Buxman: If they’re fearing for their safety, unless they’re; enlightened. We look at somebody like Viktor Frankl.

Mark S A Smith: But he’s operating at the top level.

Karyn Buxman: He is operating at the top level. And I can say, in times when I have been in fear, in times where I did not feel safe, things are not funny.

Mark S A Smith: And when somebody says, Mark, that’s not funny, I know they’re operating on level one or level two.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: Because otherwise, if they were one level three, four, or five, they would think it’s funny. So I think that’s an interesting sensitivity aspect. As we’ve talked about in other shows, how Maslow’s hierarchy, the bottom two levels, you can motivate. The top three levels, you can inspire.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And we also talk about how you sell at the level of your product and to the person. So, if you have a level three of level four product, you don’t sell to people that are at level one and level two. They can’t buy it. They can’t even conceive of it.

Karyn Buxman: Correct.

Mark S A Smith: So, this really adds more depth to my favorite model of human behavior, because it’s so easy to understand. That’s really awesome, really terrific.

Karyn Buxman: Yes. Thank you. Thank you. It’s been a work in progress over 25 years. I think that it brings so much value to somebody who really wants to be intentional about their humor.

Mark S A Smith: So, BEAST. Bond, Environment, Authenticity, Safety, and Timing. And when you keep those things in mind, you can keep the humor BEAST under control.

Karyn Buxman: Yes. And now, you have something that will increase your productivity. It will increase your quality of life. It will increase your health. It will increase your corporate culture. Every single piece of where you are wanting to influence gets raised, if you keep these five things in mind.

Mark S A Smith: Give us a simple exercise on how to improve see funny.

Karyn Buxman: O, the first step is to expect to find something funny.

Mark S A Smith: Ah.

Karyn Buxman: Yes. Challenge yourself to look for the incongruity. Challenge yourself to look for opportunities where there might be some pain. Perhaps it’s a most embarrassing moment. This is a great place for people to start. Because this is a space and a place where you experienced some pain. But the majority of our most embarrassing moments, we can now look back upon and say, oh my gosh, you should have been there when I … boom, boom, boom. Fill in the blank.

Mark S A Smith: We can also do that with our corporate environment. Where are people experiencing frustration and pain. Because there’s something funny there. Almost every time, there’s something funny there.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: And if you’re saying, no Mark, that’s not funny, well, you’re on level one and level two of Maslow’s hierarchy.

Karyn Buxman: Right.

Mark S A Smith: Ascend a level or two, you’re going to find the funny there.

Karyn Buxman: Yes. And challenge yourself to stick with it, because I think people give up too soon. You know, they hear this, and for the next 24 hours, they look around. And they think, well, this just confirms, there’s nothing funny happening in my life. But had they waited, just another day perhaps, they would see the sign like we saw on Wacker Drive in Chicago, that said, absolutely no alcohol beyond this point so start chugging immediately. Now, there’s not a bar in sight. You know, it’s like, this comes out of nowhere. But it was just so funny to see this sign.

I have a humor buddy. She’s an accountability partner. And we challenge ourselves constantly to find humor and send it to one another. She took a photo of a gym here in San Diego. You can take escalators going up to the gym, rather than the steps, so that then you can pay money to get on the StairMaster. That’s funny. People who are too much in their own head don’t see those things.

Mark S A Smith: These days, I am watching mainstream media news and just finding it to be absolutely hilarious.

Karyn Buxman: Oh my goodness.

Mark S A Smith: I’m now watching it through the lens of entertainment, and it’s a completely different experience. I’m no longer outraged. I’m just highly entertained. I laugh myself silly watching these people take the most ridiculous positions and attempting to make them logical and reasonable. Funny is everywhere.

Karyn Buxman: Yes. And that’s a great place to practice. It’s also a great place to get examples. Because people say, well, I’m not funny. Politicians and comedians, many of them are witty, but most of them are prepared more than they’re witty. And most of them have great writers. And so I tell people, borrow. Borrow from this until it feels more natural for you to come up with some of the one-liners and things. Because there’s a lot of the politicians that are very masterful at this. Like, Reagan was phenomenal with a lot of the one-liners that he had. And Bush and many of the other presidents. Obama. A lot of them have done a beautiful job with this kind of being able to have a quick response with humor.

Mark S A Smith: The ability to have those quick responses is an indication of cognitive capacity. The more complex and organized the humor, the higher the level of cognitive capacity. There’s that.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: Of course, the lower the form of humor, the lower the cognitive capacity. That’s why when you’re in fifth grade, humor is really funny, and you can’t tell that joke when you’re an adult.

Karyn Buxman: Yeah. Pull my finger, pull my finger. Although occasionally you meet the person that’s arrested at that stage of development.

Mark S A Smith: Yeah, exactly. What a great conversation. Thank you, Karyn, for sharing your thoughts and your insights. And unfortunately, we have come to the end of the show. What do you want people to do?

Karyn Buxman: We are creating a mailing list in terms of letting you know when the book, Funny Means Money will be out, in addition to some other things. And for people who would come to the website,, they will be able to take the humor quotient assessment. Which will show them where they are in terms of their abilities with humor and where they might be able to do a little bit more work. And then, in addition, we will continue to rain upon them with prizes of unspeakable value.

Mark S A Smith: Wow.

Karyn Buxman: Yes.

Mark S A Smith: Unbelievable. I love it. The silent prize. Unspeakable value. That’s wonderful. Thank you, Karyn. What a delight to be with you. For sharing your insights on using humor to improve and disrupt with the audience on the Selling Disruption show.

Karyn Buxman: Woo hoo.

Mark S A Smith: Thank you.

Karyn Buxman: Thank you, Mark.

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