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by Darren Held

That whole thing about improv and networking got us thinking about improv and other stuff. Big stuff. Like, you know, life and stuff. Because we here at H2G are nothing if not deep.

See, the thing about improv comedy is that, in every single scene, the most important thing is agreement. If your scene partner says, “You look beautiful today,” you agree. And if they say, “You are a big fat jerk,” well then, you agree with that. Because the only way to keep the scene moving forward is to agree; if they say “You look beautiful today,” and you say, “No, I don’t,” the scene has just stopped making progress and now you both have to figure out another direction to go in. That’s stressful for you and boring for the audience. Both of those are bad things, FYI.

Now we’re not suggesting that you agree with people who call you a big fat jerk in real life because obviously you’re not one! We know you’re not because if you were, you wouldn’t be reading this blog. Only beautiful, highly intelligent and sophisticated people read this blog. But I digress.

Anyway, we are suggesting that, in real life, learning to say “yes” and agree with folks is often the key to moving forward. It’s so easy to shoot down ideas – for example when your spouse suggests going to Des Moines for vacation, or your colleague wants to try the door-to-door sales approach for high-end refrigerators – but if you can learn to react instantly in the affirmative, it opens the door to more dialogue and a free flow of ideas. Maybe you say, “Yeah, Des Moines is lovely this time of year. I love corn,” or “Great idea! Let me get you that refrigerator dolly so you can wheel the sample around to people’s homes.”

See, the thing is, unless you’ve already determined that you are allergic to corn or you have tried selling Sub-Zero’s door-to-door and failed, you can’t really be sure that YOUR idea is any better. Giving up your attachment to your ideas is the key to open communication with others. Try it. Let us know how it goes!

And if you need a quick lesson, check out our 1/2-day Intro to Improv Intensive! We teach you how to be agreeable without being, you know, easy. Unless you just wanna be easy. That’s your call, and we’ll agree with it.

Darren Held
About Darren Held
Darren is the CEO and Creative Director of Held2gether, Improv for LIfe. He has been teaching and performing improv for 15 years, and has performed with H2g, the Groundlings, UCB and Second City. He loves Moto, red wine, and Madonna.

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