Dealing with Humordoomers Over the Holidays
Bah Humbug! Chances are you will encounter a few scrooges over the holidays. After years of trying to understand the negative responses that some people have to positive and joyful events and to positive people, I came up with the name “humordoomers”. This is a person who consistently uses negative humor to control and manipulate others. Humorphobia (a fear of positivity and humor) breeds humordoomers, skilled crafters who use subtle techniques to suppress humor in others.
Humordoomers are usually unhappy individuals stressed by looking at life from an empty glass. They are pessimistic vampires that can suck the energy right out of you. Grown in a petri dish of fear and anger, these folks are threatened by positivity and enthusiasm. They often use humor to manipulate others and to maintain a level of control of their world. Often their techniques are so woven into the fabric of a culture that not only are they unaware of their own negative impact, their unsuspecting prey are oblivious as well.
Humordoomers are especially frustrated at this time of year when there is “joy in the air”. The holidays make these miserable folks even more aware of their own unhappy existence.
Humordoomers are difficult to deal with. Here are a few quick suggestions:
· Squash the negativity with kindness and understanding. One never knows what is in another person’s fruitcake.
· Change the direction of the conversation. Invite them to talk about their favorite holiday memory. Share the time your spouse purchased your grocery list instead of your Christmas list.
· Avoid these scrooges altogether. Don’t let them tangle your tinsel.
· If all else fails, bonk them over the head with an empty wrapping tube.
Mary Kay is a speaker, author, and lifelong educator. She is Past- President of AATH (Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor) and was the 2016AATH Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient. Mary Kay is founder of the AATH Humor Academy and CHP (Certified Humor Professional) Program. She is the author of several books including,Using Humor to Maximize Learning; The Links between the Positive Emotions and Learning.
Additional research and resources are available through AATH (Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor) AATH is an international, non-profit organization. The AATH Humor Academy is held at the AATH annual conference. The 2019 AATH conference is in Chicago, April 3-7th.