The three questions below suggest mindfulness questions of a sort, to the art of “YES, and.”
They have provided an intentional exercise for the last couple of months as I attempt to encounter all things “life” with the attitude of IMPROV and living with the YES, and attitude.
- What surprised you?
- What did you discover about yourself?
- How did the use of “YES, and” open opportunities?
A rather ordinary YES, and encounter –
In mid-February, I flew to Louisville for a long weekend of meetings. On the drive to the airport, I encountered a fatal motorcycle crash. Yes, someone lost a life, and amid tragedy, I had to breathe deep with sadness for his/her life, while I wrestled with its impact on my responsibility (catching my flight). “Yes,” this is deep sorrow, and I must keep moving toward the airport. “Yes, and I was trying to make sure I got my weekly check-in call with my Dad while driving.”
I arrived at the airport(still on the phone of course) and my favorite parking garage was full. “Yes,” it was full, and so I got to drive around to another garage (the clock is ticking). Yes, I entered the garage incorrectly, and then I had to drive all the way around to re-enter (during this exercise my phone dropped the call). In my rush to get my car park, get my bags, and walk to the terminal, I accidentally left (without my knowledge at this point) my cell phone in my car (in the cup holder I stuck it in when it lost call). I arrived at the TSA security gate reaching into my bag, only to realize I had no boarding pass (on my phone of course) and, no time to go back to the parking garage to retrieve my phone.
God’s calming presence challenged my angst. The art of improv, at the moment, helped me see the absence of my smartphone as an invitation to improv. It was “yes,” you don’t have a phone, and it is an invitation to live a bit differently for the next four days. Yes, four days without my phone! And, I survived. I found it a gift.