Laughter, Smiles, And The Occasional Horrified Gasp
Reduce stress and lower cortisol levels while boosting your immune system—having a chuckle really does help us feel better.
One study found it even improves short-term memory which is great because, well, we forget why, but you get the picture.
Right now, we all could do with more laughter and deeper connections with those in our lives. So try out some of these virtual meeting icebreakers and enjoy the bizarre stories that have come out of Moxie Institute’s own staff.
These Virtual Meeting Icebreakers Can Get Real Deep, Dude
Some meetings are less efficient than others. Okay, most meetings are less efficient than they could be, but we’re going to discuss how to fix that in the next meeting.
Until then, we thought we’d give you a range of icebreakers to choose from depending on how much time you have.
OMG, This One Time…
Life can get weird. And since the world is in lock-down right now so we don’t need to justify that statement. Though we’ve all experienced ups and downs before this so why not share those stories? In this icebreaker, the group leader assigns random numbers to the list of topics below and each person selects a number at random. Whatever they pick is the story they have to tell.And if you haven’t guessed it yet, to help set the tone, every story has to start with “OMG, this one time…”
Topic Suggestions(feel free to add your own):
- 1Your most embarrassing moment as a kid
- 2The best thing that happened to you on vacation
- 3The most useless talent you discovered
- 4A random subject you learned a lot about
- 5The dumbest injury you ever got
- 6The biggest mistake you secretly got away with
- 7Something you tried to learn but gave up
- 8Your worst job ever
- 9The weirdest conversation you ever had
Stories from Moxie Institute8 – “OMG, this one time, I was working for a startup and was just grabbing something from a printer, when an FBI SWAT team burst in and started screaming at us! I hadn’t done anything wrong, but I wasn’t in that job much longer.”2 – “OMG, this one time, I was on a cruise with my mom and my grandmother and I was given the opportunity to sing in front of the most of the ship. So I sang one of my favorite songs, Fallin’ by Alicia Keys. It was a fun experience and I felt like a mini-celebrity for a moment!” 9 – “OMG, this one time, I was at Comic-Con and I met a gentleman who was wearing the most intricately embroidered jacket I have ever seen and he looked like Doc from Back To The Future. Turns out he was a magician who sold comics relating to magic. He bought me an ice cream sundae, showed me some of his tricks, but then it took a turn and he started talking about black magic so I made an excuse and left!”
Two Truths And A Lie
There’s a lot of benefits from this game. You get to learn facts about your colleagues as well as who is the best at telling liesvirtual communicator. Use this information as you please. Maybe don’t invite HR.
The rules are simple: one person tells two truths and one lie about themself and everyone else has to try to guess the lie.
- Make a live poll so people can vote for their choice rather than talking all at once.
- Trick people by hiding a ridiculous truth between a normal truth and lie.e.g. “I hate salad. I high-fived the king of Norway. I used to be a dance instructor.”
Stories from Moxie Institute“I nearly drowned in a shallow turtle pond. I have never been to Disneyland. My parents speak 5 languages between them but I only speak English.”
“I have been to every continent in the world. I have gone diving with great white sharks in South Africa. And I have driven through the Swiss Alps in France.”
10-Word Life Story
Out of all the virtual meeting icebreakers, this is the most short and quiet.Everyone is tasked with writing out a sentence of 10 words or less that sums up their life story. You might be amazed at how much information can be contained in so few words—unless you work in social media.
This one can be a bit hard for some people to think of so here are some examples:
- I wanted to travel. Saw the world and found home.
- I liked laughing. So now I make others laugh.
- Sociable child. A single mother. A successful woman in sales.
- I learned to speak and then I learned to lead.
- I made enough mistakes to become a master.
Stories from Moxie Institute“Creative woman inspiring others through her journey of finding herself.”“I fell head over heels in love with life.”“Small town. Long wait. Made it happen.”“In constant pursuit for new life experiences.”
There are few things more enjoyable than watching someone be thrust into a crazy situation and watching them panic.
But these aren’t strangers on reality TV, they’re your colleagues—so it’s even more enjoyable. Out of all the virtual meeting icebreakers this one can get pretty silly.
In this game, you provide a challenging and thought-provoking scenario and the group votes for a “leader”. The leader then has to present their plan of action in an articulate and confident manner.
We’ve provided some prompts to get started but you’re encouraged to think of your own and add in more restrictions and issues as their plan unfolds!
- You are in a group of casual hikers who have gotten lost in the woods. Night has fallen and you can hear wolves howling in the distance. Everyone only brought water and snacks for a day trip with no survival gear. What do you do?
- It’s the year 3045. Humans have been at war with 7ft radioactive squirrels for 247 years. A recent scout mission has discovered a forest of trees that the squirrels cannot climb. But the forest is on the other side of the squirrel’s huge nest. How do you get you and your people there with minimal casualties?
- Aliens have landed on Earth! For some reason, they refuse to talk to anyone other than you. They have made two demands. 1) All humans must bow before them and 2) They require humanities entire supply of toothpicks. Failure to comply will lead to the imminent destruction of Earth. Many people refuse to bow and want to fight. How do you convince the world to meet their demands?
Stories from Moxie InstituteSurviving Squirrels“I actually developed suits that look like 7ft radioactive squirrels. We’re going to study and mimic how the squirrels live and how they act. We’ll then disguise ourselves and sneak through the nest.”“That’s great! But there’s a nuclear winter coming so we have to move now. Unfortunately, it’s also the squirrel’s mating season, how do we get through this?” “We’re going to figure out what traits the most unattractive squirrels have so we can imitate them and appear undesirable!”Alien Appeasement“I would start with the toothpicks. I’d negotiate with the aliens, (who have traveled through space for them by the way so they must really want them), to trade all of Earth’s toothpicks for their interstellar space travel technology. I would say this would help ensure Earth bows to them. I’ll assume the negotiations go perfectly. But now we have the issue of pride. How do we get people to bow? Well, we can maybe convince the aliens that they misunderstood us during their observations. And that actually our ‘bow’, our sign of respect, is showing the middle finger. Then as a species, we all do it at the same time via an interstellar Zoom call thus satisfying the aliens.”
We genuinely had a ton of fun doing these virtual meeting icebreakers and learned a lot about each other. On your next meeting, set some time aside to play at least one of these and enjoy the laughs!
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