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Chapter 4. Disarming Anger With Humor > Humor and the Aikido Advantage

Humor and the Aikido Advantage

“Go for the jocular vein, not the jugular vein.”

Joel Goodman

Verbal Aikido can be funny and effective. Instead of overpowering others with anger or arguments, take advantage of the jocular vein! Using positive empathetic humor instead of counterattacks, is one of a humorous application of the martial arts form of aikido. One of aikido’s principal tenets can be summed up in two sentences—“When pushed, pull. When pulled, push.” In verbal aikido the message is similar—“When attacked, accept, redirect, and affirm.” Instead of giving an expected response of defensiveness (“Who me?”) or the counterattack (“You’re not so hot either!”), the attacker is turned aside by absorbing and using his attack—“You’re right! It’s not like me, but sometimes I act that way.” One can honor the other person’s right to a critical point of view while still maintaining one’s own integrity and value.


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