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by Darren Held

Are you the type who always gets it right the first time? In school, do the papers and projects you submit consistently come back from the teacher with a gold star? In the office, do your coworkers come to you to double check their reports for accuracy? In your circle of friends, are you the one who has the Friday night plans detailed down to the very minute?

If so, we know your type, and we have a love/hate relationship with your personality.

We love you because you are exact. You’ve analyzed the possibilities and have come up with the most cost effective, time efficient solution. Your work product is flawless. In short, you’re perfect.

On the flipside, we hate you — well, “hate” is a bit of a strong word — we struggle with you, because you can come across rigid. No deviation is allowed. It’s your way or the highway. And quite frankly, sometimes in dealing with you, we feel like taking the highway.

It’s nothing personal. And we really do see the value you bring to relationships. But we can see an unintended consequence of your perfectionism — your fear of taking risk. Paralysis by over-analysis. Not wanting to take action until you know the outcome will be flawless. And when things don’t go perfectly, you’re lining up heads for the guillotine. Does this sound familiar?

Held2gether’s non-licensed, non-certified, non-credentialed, but highly intuitive therapists have a perfect cure for you – a slice of humble pie. Not a big, honking, calorie-rich slice that could negatively impact your perfect figure, but a thin slice that will stimulate your tastebuds and help you appreciate the flavor of imperfection. It’s an acquired taste and we’re here to help.

Improv cannot be planned, and as such, you learn to embrace mistakes. You may be in a scene where everything seems to be going right – you and your scene partner are “yes, anding” each other, heightening the situation to the point of side-splitting hilarity. The next scene, you do all the same things, but you can hear a cricket chirp in the audience.

That’s the nature of improv — nothing is scripted, nothing can be planned, nothing is perfect (including the audience). So you learn to deal. You dust yourself off and in the next scene, you try something new and you take a risk. Suddenly, the audience is laughing again. You got your mojo back. And it didn’t happen because you’re perfect. It happened because you chose to embrace your imperfections and go with ‘em. Ah, what a refreshing feeling!

There’s a time and place for your perfectionism – while performing a root canal is a prime example. But there is also something to be said for learning to roll with the punches.

Come take a class with Held2gether and you’ll see how imperfection is just as wonderful as perfection.

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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