Kevin Hart shares his No. 1 ‘secret weapon’ for career success—it’s great advice, experts say

WATCH WHAT HAPPENS LIVE WITH ANDY COHEN -- Episode 19126 -- Pictured: Kevin Hart -- (Photo by: Charles Sykes/Bravo via Getty Images)

In addition to his comedy, actor Kevin Hart owns a plant-based restaurant chain, a tequila brand and an entertainment and production company called HartBeat.

The single thread between them all, and the “secret weapon” to his success, the 44-year-old said in a recently published MasterClass course: the power of humor. “Humor has acted like the master key to every door that I’ve [gone] through,” said Hart. “There’s humor in everything, if you choose to find it.”

In the workplace, that might mean laughing off a silly mistake or starting a big presentation with joke to relieve the pressure. In much tougher moments, humor is equally valuable, Hart noted.

“In your darkest moments, you’ve got to find the light. And it starts with yourself,” he said. “If you take yourself too seriously, that’s the biggest problem. When you can start there, by breaking yourself down, it’s easy to understand how everything else can be broken down.”

“If you can find a laugh, you’ll find ease,” he added. “Laugh at everything.”

Humor isn’t always recognized as an important soft skill, but research shows that making others laugh can increase your status and success at work. Laughter can significantly boost your productivity, Daniel Sgroi, an economics professor at the U.K.’s University of Warwick, told CNBC Make It in 2021.

Making people genuinely laugh boosts their output by up to 12%, found a 2015 study that Sgroi co-authored. It activates both dopamine and serotonin in the brain, which can “help you concentrate and focus,” he said.

“It’s almost like being happy generates more time,” said Sgroi.

When used tactfully, humor also helps you project confidence and competence, according to a 2015 study co-authored by researchers from The University of Pennsylvania and The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

If you struggle with humor, or consider yourself unfunny, you can still lean on character traits like positivity and charisma to work a room and get ahead, said Hart. Or, you can find more situations to laugh at in your everyday life.

“There’s humor in everything if you choose to find it,” he said, and learning to not take everything seriously will cause a “shift in your perspective and approach to life.”

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