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  • Writer's pictureLauren Morris

Improv Philosophy: Assume Complexity

In work and in life, we interact with a variety of people, places, inputs, and stimuli. Each of these has an impact on one another creating a more complex outcome. If we only had to think about our response to the stimulus, life gets simple. Life, however, does not work that way.

So why would we consider teams, performers, work, and organizations behave like a simple construct? The answer is we shouldn't assume that. We need to assume Individual performers, work teams, and organizations may be considered complex adaptive systems.

This is what I mean by assume complexity as part of my improv philosophy. By assuming our performance in the improv classroom or on stage is complex rather than simple, we actually set ourselves up for success. This assumption allows us to identify key concepts and tools that will help us play, learn, grow, and succeed.

Many of us are conditioned to look at obstacles that are problems and give a negative mindset to the situation. We also think we need to solve our problems as individuals.

Assuming complexity in our learning, growth, teams, and on stage, we can hone our ability to adapt and look at obstacles as challenges and opportunities to create together in improv.

Doing this in the classroom, rehearsals, or in performances then helps us transfer these skills to the larger complex world. The end result is feeling more confident, secure, and ready to face every day.

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