Key 6: Humor

Tension Diffused Through Humor-Have You Ever Done That?

Tension Diffused Through Humor

Tension Diffused Through Humor. Been there, done that?
When you’re trying to make a point, are you the “squeaky wheel that gets the grease?” Or maybe you’re the one who “catches more flies with honey” instead of using vinegar. Perhaps, you learned from The Rolling Stones that “you can’t always get what you want.” How often do you use humor to soften things?


A Sense of Humor Is Important

Humor is right up there with loyalty and dependability at the top of the list of qualities sought on dating websites. Humor is a great ice breaker. It can cut through awkward silences and soothe the pain of an embarrassing moment. It’s good for a lot of things.

A Return on Humor

The other day I had to return a homeopathic remedy because it wasn’t needed. The over-the-counter allergy remedy remained sealed. I told the clerk and that we wanted to return it because my husband didn’t need it but he had accidentally shredded the receipt.

“Do you have the receipt?” she asked me.

“Uhh, no. That’s why I mentioned that my husband shredded it.”

She responded with, “Oh, yeah. I heard you say that.”


She said, “Without a receipt, how would I know it’s from our store?”

“Because the product has the store name all over it.”

“Oh.” Then, “What was wrong with it?”

“My husband has cat allergies. We traveled to a house with a cat and he was fine, so he never had to use it. It’s sealed.”

“Oh, yeah. I heard you say that.”

(OMG! It was starting to sound like Abbott and Costello’s Who’s On First?)

She added, “We can’t take it back without a receipt. Too bad that you bought it and he didn’t use it.”


I said, “Do you really want me to tell my husband that you’re disappointed that he didn’t go into sneezing, swelling, fits of congestion so he could use the product?”

Thankfully, she laughed. Tension diffused.

I was given a store credit and there was a happy ending.

It got me thinking, though, about how humor can diffuse tension.

Question of the Day

When have you used humor to soften someone’s response?

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