Showing posts from August, 2021

It's Not About Being Funny, It's About Being a Better You

  Many psychologists and researchers believe we have five core personality traits; openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. It may help to remember them with the acronym, OCEAN. Like any other personality typing such and Myers-Briggs, these traits provide a range of  behavior, from high to low. They are a convenient way to look at how we are "wired" but they do not dictate how we will always react. There is also evidence that we can re-wire our traits through activities and life experience. Our experiences can actually lead us to either end of the spectrum. In the context of improvisation, I can see three areas where the skills of improv can help us become more open, secure, and agreeable. Improv teaches us to accept all gifts and build upon them. It's the basic Yes, And of improv. Since I cannot deny a partner's offer, I must take their suggestion and integrate it into our scene. What this does is enhance our integrative complexity.

"Adaptive Change" sermon based on 1 Kings: 2

  Adaptive Change: sermon for Proper 15 by the Rev. Rick Kautz The Lord came to Solomon in a dream and said, “Ask what I should give you?” Basically, God told Solomon to make a wish. Although it’s only one wish and not three, I think its better than the genie in the bottle, because, you know, it’s GOD! So, right now I would like everyone to take a moment and think about what it is they would wish for. Health? And end to Covid? World peace? All great options.   What Solomon wished for, was not any of those things. He wished for wisdom, which itself is wise. It’s wise because if we wish for health today, we could fall ill tomorrow. We could end Covid today, but a new virus could spring up anytime, anywhere. World peace? We’ve had moments of world peace before, but they don’t last long. People are still people; we scapegoat, we project, we deny, we are greedy, and selfish. It’s all about me and it’s all about now.   Solomon didn’t ask God to change the world, he asked God to chang

Finding Connection and Comfort in Improv

  Once you immerse yourself into the world of improv, you start to see improv principles in almost every aspect of life. One place I didn't expect to find an improv connection is in hygge. Hygge (pronounced hoo-gah) is the Danish art of contentment, comfort, and connection. Hygge has been described as a quality of presence and an experience of belonging and togetherness. It is a feeling of being warm, safe, comforted, and sheltered. Hygge is about family and connection.  Hygge is about family gatherings, sharing meals, and snuggling by the fire with a cup of hot tea or cocoa. To hygger means to put oneself in this cozy state. This seems the antithesis of comedy improv. Most people view improv as fast paced, hectic, and anything but calming. For the average person, improv is stress-inducing, not stress-relieving. At the very heart of improv, however, you find the same values; connectivity, being in the moment, and being supportive of the other. This is what Louisa Thomsen Brits wrot