Even though it’s a necessary part of learning and getting better, failure can hit us pretty hard. Failure, however, is an essential component of improv comedy, and approaching failure like it’s just part of a scene in your life can help you take it in stride.
Photo by improvboston
Gary Ware of Dumb Little Man thinks that people put too much focus on success. He suggests we look at failures like jokes that don’t quite land in an improv scene:
Not every improv scene is going to be a hit, and that’s OK. If a scene is going bad, you scrap it and start again. Not all audiences would appreciate or understand your humour and that’s fine. It doesn’t mean that you’re not good at what you’re doing. You learn to embrace the failure as much, if not more than the success.
Think of the way you do things as your sense of humour. If you take on something and your sense of humour doesn’t quite fit, it’s not the end of the world. Just wrap up the scene, embrace that failure, and get ready for the next one. If you have a particularly hard time accepting failure, try taking an improv class to make yourself more comfortable with failing, and more comfortable failing in front of others. Failure can be scary, but it’s ultimately required in life. Ware highlights a powerful, well-known truth: not trying makes you a failure.
3 Ways Embracing the Principles of Improv Can Change Your Life [Dumb Little Man]