Keeping Connections

A lot of people think improv is about coming up with clever lines quickly. Although that can, at times, provide laughs, the real basis is connection. Improv is a team art. It's about working together, and working together requires connection. So before you worry about what funny thing to say, work on getting connected. Improv teacher Jimmy Carrane writes in his book, Improvising Better, "It's not the words, it's the connection, we mean the nonverbal connection..the silence between you and your partner before you think the scene has begun." Before you get into your head about what to say, spend time just being connected.

As we continue to remain somewhat isolated in our homes during this time of "social distancing" we may lose that sense of connection. So, Spiritual Improvisers, how do you stay connected to others without being in physical contact? I know churches and others have latched on to Zoom for online gatherings. Facebook live is another way to be engaged with others in real time. A friend told me about an app called Houseparty. This app allows you to play online games live with your friends. (I haven't tried this out yet.) There are several old fashioned ways to stay connected as well.

Give a call. You know that hand held computer device which allows you to send texts and tweets can also serve as a phone. When was the last time you actually phoned a friend to check on them or give them encouragement? I know I don't call as often as I should. I try to call my grown children once a week and there is one friend I tend to connect with on the phone a couple of times a month.  The rest are few and far between. During this time of isolation, I have committed to calling a different friend each week.

Write a letter. Put pen to paper and write a note telling your friends and relations how much you miss them. Share what they mean to you and how they have helped you in the past. Remind them that although you may not be able to see them, they are still an important part of your life.

Can you improvise other ways to stay connected? Remember, it's not so much what you say as the act of reaching out and staying connected. You are not alone, you are part of something greater; community.

Be blessed my Spiritual Improvisers.

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