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Fall quarter is a busy time, especially this year when we are continuing to navigate supporting our teams through ambiguity and uncertainty. Knowing this, the podcast, The Happiness Lab: Laurie Gets a Fun-tervention helped us explore opportunities to bring more fun to our work and leisure.

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Watch the forum discussion

October 28, 2021

About the podcast

The two-part podcast, The Happiness Lab: Laurie Gets a Fun-tervention with Dr. Laurie Santos, Professor of Psychology and Head of Silliman College at Yale University, discusses the research behind goofing off and enjoying yourself being vitally important to your health, productivity and wellbeing. Laurie starts the podcast by placing herself as the subject in an intervention and asking Catherine Price, author of The Power of Fun: How to Feel Alive Again,  to rescue her and stage an emergency fun-tervention. 

“Fun” as defined in the podcast:

  • Playfulness- the feeling of being outside the normal responsibilities of life. Science shows that play not only feels nice, but is also good for our bodies and brains. Studies find that people who play more often are less susceptible to chronic conditions like dementia and heart disease.
  • Connection- the feelings of social togetherness. Studies show that being around other people increases our positive mood and improves our mental health.
  • Flow- the feeling when you are so present and passionately involved in something that time just starts flying by.

Benefits of fun

  • Increases productivity
  • Helps minamize burnout
  • Lowers cortisol (a  the stress hormone) 
  • Can provide a sense of meaning

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