How improve it!’s workshop pushed me to step out of my comfort zone

How does one step out of their comfort zone? As a young woman, I’m always looking to stay within my comfort zone and stick with what I’m good at. I am definitely not one to raise my hand in class or spit out the ideas in my head. Instead, I sit there wondering if my idea was good enough and if I should even share my opinion. Improve it!’s public workshop certainly helped to push me out of my comfort zone and into the real world of improv, where effective communication and confidence is key.

I’ve always had an interest in improv because I spend my Saturday nights watching…you guessed it! Saturday Night Live! But never in my life would I have actually taken an improv workshop. I could never be spontaneously funny like Kristen Wigg or Amy Poehler and come up with lines like they do at the top of my head. The day of the workshop, everything was great as we set up. I was busy admiring the room we were in – enjoying my colorful mug of coffee, until it had hit me that I had to participate in improv…something I definitely was not comfortable with. I walked into this workshop not knowing what to expect. I was so nervous that I was shaking! But once Erin pulled out the signature improve it! chicken hat, the laughter in the room immediately calmed my nerves. It really is true what they say – laughter is the perfect medicine.

By being engaged in the workshop, I was able to learn so many different things that I know can help me in my future endeavors. I was pushed to do things that I would have never done before, which helped me to learn about effective communication. Effective communication, I learned, calls for great listening skills, correct body language, precise vocal tones, and the ability to think fast. All of the activities in the workshop pulled me out of my shell to do these things. The best part about improvisation is that there are absolutely no mistakes and the workshop is a judge-free zone (or should I say, a “circle of trust”). Having that “circle of trust” during the workshop made my experience ten times better – especially when I was speaking gibberish to complete strangers.

Now I can say that I feel more confident in doing the uncomfortable because being uncomfortable for that small amount of time taught me something new. Improve it!’s workshop ended up being such a great experience that exceeded my expectations. It has without a doubt helped me step out of my comfort zone. My advice? Take a chance to make a change. Come share in the uncomfortable fun with me at the next improve it! workshop!