Showing posts from May, 2020

Creating Space to Fail

If you take risks, you will fail. No, I don't mean play it safe and stop taking risks. What I mean is that you need to fail, and fail often, to move forward. We learn from our mistakes more than from our successes. Failure is a part of improv every time a performer steps on stage. Not every skit will slay, or idea be brilliant, but when the ensemble is built on trust and communication, it usually turns out okay. You stop, think it through, trust the team, and move on. Its the same in business, church, life. What needs to happen, though, is there needs to be a culture that values risk and experimentation. There needs to be a platform where new ideas can be tested without fear of failure. It's risky outside the box, and you need to know you will be covered if you step outside of it. If you want your organization to be agile and creative, then when a team member fails you can't be upset. It is your job to help them find the gold nuggets in the failure. What did you all learn

Facing the Fear

Statistically five to nine percent of people suffer from glossophobia; fear of public speaking. Those are only people, however, who are incapable of speaking in front of others. There are countless others who may not have the actual phobia, but would place public speaking  high on their list of things they hate. The fear of speaking in public is all about making fools of ourselves. It's hard to fail, even more hard to fail in public. We become concerned about what people think of us. We put up defenses in order to guard our ego. We want to look good, be perceived as intelligent, successful, in control. If I don't risk, I can't fail. But on the other hand, if I don't risk, I can't achieve great things.  One of the catch phrases in Improv is, "Face the Fear." Run toward what scares you and face it head on. Let the ego die and don't be afraid of looking foolish. The defenses we put up in order to be cool and collected keep us from being as creative and

Improvising through the pain

Dear spiritual improvisers, this should not be news to anyone, but life is not easy. Everyone has problems big and small. The power to overcome problems can only come from within. The only thing we can control is our response to the problems life throws at us. You can worry and let the problems destroy you or you can let it go. Monty Python sings "always look on the bright side of life." Beyonce dedicates an entire album to her grandmother's adage, "if life gives you lemons, make lemonade." Taylor Swift tells us to just "shake it off." You can also turn your pain into comedy. Sam Wasson in his book, Nation writes, "That's what so much of comedy is - problems." But you may say, my problems are serious and certainly nothing to laugh at. As we go through our life problems they can, indeed, seem overpowering. Well meaning friends may say things like, "one day we'll all have a good laugh about this." That may be a hard thing to