Five individuals joined me from different professional fields: sales, construction, business owner, and nonprofit services. We were a mixed group of introverts and extroverts and our personalities varied. We tentatively looked around at each other as we anticipated the "improv" we were going to be doing that first evening.
Megan began the workshop with opening comments about communications and making human connections and she quickly laid out three clear rules. The one I remember specifically is "to check the judgment at the door". It stuck with me and at the end of four weeks, it made a real difference!
We make so many split judgment assumptions about people we meet. Even in my interviewing coaching sessions, clients and I discuss how a candidate makes an impression in less than 30 seconds! It's what we do in our society. And yet, "checking the judgment" made all the difference in the world!
During our activities, we laughed at our own awkwardness (and yes, everyone else's too!) and funny responses. Yet, by the end of that first night, we couldn't wait for week two! We were encouraging one another and by the end of the series, we were all able to connect. I even saw how the quietest person had the funniest moments and the most outgoing person needed some encouragement to jump into one of the activities.
By the end of the series, I learned about different comfort levels, insecurities, and of course, humor! What I thought was comfortable, was uncomfortable for someone else (and vice versa). We have to pause to "see" what someone else is capable of (even if they don't believe it themselves). I even surprised myself as I grew in not judging myself. This woman cannot sashay across a room to save her life... but I had the biggest grin doing it!
It's far too easy sometimes to make assumptions about someone. However, we can train ourselves to stop and give people a chance just as easily. The Improv Basics workshop was centered around comedy exercises that quickly broke down walls that led to a really engaging time.
Megan Bryant brought my group together to have some fun, to learn more about ourselves individually, and to learn how to make a real human connection. It was a fantastic experience!