There’s nothing worse than someone who takes themselves too seriously. Well, maybe AIDS. Or Hitler. But still, it’s pretty bad. The brown-nosers and know-it-alls of the world need to take a long look in the mirror, because it’s high time someone told them what we’re all thinking. No one likes you.
Now I’m not advocating that you stop trying or giving a shit altogether. No, I’m saying that if you find yourself frowning more than you smile, and stressed more than blessed, maybe you need to lighten up. Take a load off. Use up some of those vacation days we millennials are afraid of spending. Realize that the more you take yourself seriously, the less everyone else will. Start cracking some jokes at your own expense. Be a little bit self-deprecating, because it’s the key to success.
Not taking yourself too seriously is one of the skills that you don’t realize the value of until you try it. Once you stop, life becomes much easier. Events outside of your control that used to cause you seemingly insurmountable amounts of stress magically seem to become more manageable.
I know far too many people who panic over what I consider minor inconveniences, or who stress themselves out over something trivial, only to find out later that everything was fine. That type of behavior does some serious work on your body and mind, and not in a good way.
Chances are you occasionally make a mistake at work. I do it. Your coworkers do it. However, the more you act like you’re perfect and never screw-up, the more your coworkers are going to hate you, and the invites to lunches and post-work drinks will rapidly become few and far between. Any half-decent book on business or success will tell you not to be afraid to fail. Hell, some of them probably tell you not to take yourself too seriously. Spoiler alert: Their hours and hours of research that went into their book and my opinion are absolutely right. Trust me, I’m 22.
Don’t worry. If you’re reading this and thinking to yourself that you might be that person who takes themselves too seriously, it’s never too late to change. If you’re feeling apprehensive about removing the stick from your ass, start small. If you’ve got thinning hair or are hopelessly out of shape, you’re already ahead of the game. Those two physical features are perfect intros for some light-hearted humor at your own expense. Make a comment about how your head-suit only has a few good years left or how you probably shouldn’t be winded after going up some stairs. Drawing attention to your flaws in a humorous way can be a phenomenal approach to humanize you a little bit and help coworkers slowly come to the realization that maybe you aren’t a miserable person to hang with after all.
Regardless of whether or not you take this advice, I’m sure some of you have horror stories about office know-it-alls, brown-nosers, or someone who takes themselves way too seriously..