Ego Improv

There is a custom in improvisational theater that when an actor suggests a scenario, the other actors go with it. They just say yes to whatever comes along. If you’re doing improv and your partner asks, “Is your head stuck in the banister again?”, you would say, “It’s my third time today, I can’t believe my luck”. That saying yes prevents arguments on stage and creates comedy. That same trick can be used in everyday life to challenge your ego.

It’s so easy to get stuck worrying what other people think of you. Your ego wants others to see you just as you want to be seen. If they think something about you that isn’t true, you may get embarrassed or angry because they have the wrong idea about you. If you notice this happening, you can just use the improv trick and pretend to be what the people think of you. You don’t have make a comedy routine of your life, but you can do it in your mind.  Pretend, just for a moment, that you are what others think you are. Don’t fight it, but pretend it, knowing that it’s not true.

When you feel hurt by what somebody thinks of you and you react with anger or embarrassment, then you are believing their misconception. When you pretend to be what they think you are, then you can easily see that they are wrong and their mistaken opinion won’t hurt you so much. Each time you try this trick, your ego will shrink a little. Your True Self, which is impervious to judgement, will shine through. You’re a star.

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