Plussing: How to treat life like improv comedy

Sir Ken Robinson shared about Pixar’s “Plussing” and how it’s like improv comedy. This is my rough paraphrase of what he said:

Imagine an improve act going something like this:

  • The first guy says, “Such a great day on the beach today, isn’t it?”
  • The second guy says, “No, we’re not on the beach. We’re at a bus stop.”

That’s a dead end. It’s not going anywhere. If anything, it’ll turn into a struggle between beach and bus stop, which it’s going to be. At best, one will get what he wants. At worst, neither will.

Now consider this alternative:

  • The first guy says, “Such a great day on the beach today, isn’t it?”
  • The second guy says, “Yeah, but what an odd place to put a bus stop.”

That’s going somewhere. They’re both getting what they want, but neither expected it that way.

Life’s the same way. You ruin it if you try to back up and change things or control things too much. Instead, it’s about accepting what’s already been thrown at you and running with it. In fact, like with improv, that’s what makes it exciting.

No one says, “No, but…” Only, “Yes, and…” No subtracting, just… plussing. :)

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