I’ve taken Steve Shapiro’s advice and have come up with two intentions for 2008 – be adventurous and let go. They are very closely related. Being adventurous is about jumping in, having a go, doing something and letting go of my need to know – in advance – that it will be successful and that I’ll be competent. I want to live by the improvisational maxims to ‘be average’ and ‘celebrate failure’. I want to let go of expectations – mine and others’. And if something’s not working, I’ll stop it.
So now it’s 2009. How well did I do? I’m quite happy with my progress. I started a new business, worked in Cambodia and Zambia, and tried to live more spontaneously. I’ve blogged more, hoping that what I write for myself may be of interest to others; embraced twitter (the big surprise for me in 2008) and tried out lots of other web-based tools (some more successfully than others).
And for 2009 my intention is to make, and accept, more offers – to be bolder and more generous. In improvised theatre, making and accepting offers is fundamental. This helps move the action forward, and provides a platform on which to build. Blocking, or not accepting an offer, usually stops the action dead in its tracks.
An important understanding about accepting offers is that acceptance doesn’t presuppose agreement. I can accept your offer without agreeing with it. By accepting I acknowledge the offer and build on it, taking you with me. Together we might build something amazing, or at least have fun finding out.
While I’ve worked on accepting offers, I’ve not been so good at making offers. Implicit in making offers is that some, even many, may be rejected, as not everyone subscribes to, is even aware of, the improvisational power of accepting offers. So in making more offers I have to be prepared for the ‘yes, but…’ response, or the even more direct ‘no, that won’t work’. My response will be to make even more offers.