Practice Accepting & Building With Us At Play Theory Bootcamp! (Week 4)

September 16, 2021

This is week 4 of our Play Theory Bootcamp! This week, we're focusing on how we can practice Accepting and Building. Validation of others, agree where possible, and having enthusiasm are all ways to describe this principle. Come practice happiness with us over the next couple of weeks as we give you ACTIONABLE happiness drills to practice in your day-to-day life!

LaRee will guide us through a very thought-out Play Theory experience for you to combat the pessimism and negativity we find ourselves in these days.

Let's dive in.    



Practice saying "YES" and then contributing or building upon the conversation with others. 

Come join the conversation and play with us!


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Remember that Life is a team sport, so let's play together!


📍 Welcome to the happiness playbook, a podcast dedicated to the belief that life is a team sport. I'm your host, Larry Florence. And this is week four of our play theory bootcamp, where we're up in her happy game

this week's highlight reel is about the red head convention that takes place every year in the county.

Cork people with red hair have gathered every year in Southern Ireland for the Irish redhead convention. Held over three days, the celebrations include crowning the ginger king and queen competitions for the best red eyebrows and most freckles per square inch. Red hair is the rarest of hair. Colors and accounts are only 2% of the world's population.

Scotland has the highest percentage of natural redheads in the world with 13%. And can you guess who comes in second? If you guessed Ireland, you'd be correct. They clock in at 10% of the world's population. So that means 23% are in the British Isles. That's crazy. This festival was the idea of a red-headed brother and sister Jolene and Dennis Cronin.

I love it. They siblings cut together and did something really fun that thousands and thousands of people are. All right. It's time for our post-game analysis. How did you do with last week's principle? Let go and play. Did you notice when you were willing to let go and have fun? Did you notice when you weren't and when you felt foolish, what thoughts did you have about letting go of.

Before we get into our practice for this week. It's time for our team huddle. Wanna give a shout out and a thank you to the 166 new play theory. Facebook page likes. You can also follow us at the play theory. Well, it's actually the happiness playbook Instagram account. So thank you for connecting with us on social.

All right. It's time to get on with our play-by-play for this week's principle so far in our play through bootcamp, we've covered be present and let go and play. These two principles are often intertwined. As a matter of fact, it's an ongoing debate about which one we should teach. First, for example, when I'm playing pickleball and heaven forbid I hit it into the net.

If I don't let go of the mistake, I get stuck in the past replaying what went wrong. And then I ended up missing the next shot. That comes my way because I wasn't being present. I'll perform much better if instead of dwelling on the mistake, I let go and play and refocus on being present by literally keeping my eye on the ball as it comes off the servers pattern.

And focusing in on it, which brings me back to the present moment and helps me let go of the previous mistake. Not letting go is the antithesis of being present, but enough review last week I promised we talk about the play theory principle that started it all.

Some of, you may know that I'm the founding artistic director of take note troop, an award-winning afterschool youth theater program. We specialize in annual performances of Shakespeare in the park for cities of Rocklin, fulsome, and Auburn here in Northern Cal. We also have an award-winning improv team.

We're the only team that scored a perfect 100% in adjudication taking first place in yield improv competition, a improv competition that's affiliated with the Utah Shakespeare festival, but that's a whole other story at first glance, Shakespeare and improv seemed to be at polar opposites of the theatrical realm.

One is the pinnacle and scripted theater and the other is without any script or preparation at all, how did we come to do both and to do both very well? Well, when my oldest daughter was 13, she approached me about learning Shakespeare. And since we were homeschooling, I set out to teacher what started out as a cooperative of families in my back.

Spring the audience with a hose to recreate the waves at the Tempest grew into a regular long standing program that serves hundreds of families in our community. Jana Hargadon was my partner in starting out on this journey and she knew of an improv group in San Francisco called flash family that did apply theater or improv workshops.

She thought it'd be good for the cast to have a safety net to fall back on. If they forgot a line or made a mistake. And that made sense to me, even though the idea of unscripted theater improv was rather intimidating. And I really wasn't interested in the idea, but Jen insisted. And so we loaded up our cast of around 30 teenagers, drove into San Francisco to a second story, open warehouse loft to do a workshop, even though I had trepidations.

As I listened to Andy, the workshop leader, explain the guidelines for improv. I felt myself drop into a moment outside of time. As everything in the room fell away and to force outside of myself, communicated without voice pay attention. This is one of the most important things you'll ever learn. That's certainly got my attention for those familiar with improv you'll know the foundational rule who even knew there were rules to improv is say yes.

And let me explain in a made up scene where no one knows what's going to happen. Someone has to start it with something like walking on stage and saying, good morning. The scene partner would then say yes to being their mom and that it's morning if instead the other person in the scene rejects that and says something like, Hey, hold up.

I am not your mom. And it's 10 o'clock at night. Then instead of having something to build a scene on, they've both got exactly nothing. For example. Two actors step on stage to start an improvised scene. There are no scripts, no rehearsals, just an idea or prompt given in the moment, usually drawn out from the audience could be something pretty vague like school bus or Atlantic city or marshmallow.

The actors then use that idea to form something solid from the ethos of the present moment and their collective creativity sounds pretty crazy. And it is except it's the sanest most real thing we could ever think of because it's the only real thing each of us does every single moment of our lives.

I'm serious. Think about it. None of us rehearse living. We don't have a script. We don't have practices. We wake up and we go through each moment creating. As we go. And if there are others in our moment, then we get to create it with them. Instead of having a prompt, like marshmallow, maybe it's work, zoom meeting, or maybe unexpected encounter with your ex or even just boredom.

What do you do with those scenarios? How do you act in them? And here's the map? Just as staged improvised scenes are built around saying yes and, and building on ideas. So we're the daily minutiae of our lives. We progress and create as we accept the situation and build upon, instead of rejecting it or denying it or trying to demean it or control it or manipulate.

Those actions don't bear good fruit instead, try, accepting whatever the situation is. And then building on it. We used to call this third play theory principles say yes, and, but it's harder to explain. So we've distilled it down to its essence and instead call it accept and build, which is what you're doing in an improv scene.

When you say. To be clear by saying, except I'm not saying for example, that you accept a negative situation like abuse and just live with it. I am saying, except that it has happened and then move in the direction you want to go based on an honest appraisal of where you are. Another example might be living in denial of having.

Instead of avoiding a weigh in on the scale or acknowledging that you can't make it up the stairs without a break to catch your breath, make an assessment of where you are and then take steps to get where you want to be. If you don't ever acknowledge where you're at, you won't be able to chart a course to where you want to go.

Think about your map. You have to first list where you are before it can tell you how to get where you're going. Also, when there's something that's dangerous or threatening, of course, I want to make it clear. You don't have to accept that or say yes to that. You say no, because no stops things. What I am saying is that in our culture, we're more fear-based and apathetic than we need to be in.

We say no out of habit or fear when a yes or acceptance of at least part of the offer would build a relationship or move us towards a solution instead of further polarization and division. So now, you know, the very beginnings of how play theory came to be after that revel, a Tory experience in the workshop, I spent a lot of time cogitating on what was so impressive.

And then putting those ideas and principles into action. And that's how the play third principles came to be the really just what sports psychologists call relevant cues, meaning two to three actionable words that act as powerful triggers to influence our behavior in positive ways. Hopefully. These queues help us focus on specific actions that dramatically increase our ability to achieve our desired outcome, which in the case of play theory is a positive mindset that fosters creativity and positive collaboration.

Now for our play of the week, I'll leave you with a thought that is a total game changer. Think about our interactions with others as an exchange of energy in the martial art of Kung Fu the power is found in accepting and then redirecting energy that comes from an opponent rather than trying to block or stop it acceptance and saying yes, builds energy.

Well saying no stops. Just as in an improv scene in life, when we accept other's ideas and build upon them or redirect them, it generates constructive energy leaning in with enthusiasm and saying yes, when appropriate fuels, acceptance of self and others, and is the bedrock of validation. It's a great way of looking at life.

Give it a try. Did you notice the example of acceptance built in her highlights? What a wonderful way for this brother and sister to work together, to accept their hair color, that I have known some red heads that, that reject it they're embarrassed, or they don't like how they stand out from other people.

And instead these siblings accepted it and then built a wonderful opportunity for others who share the same characteristic to come together and to celebrate. I think that's such a fun example. When you start looking around, you'll see really great positive examples of this principle all around you.

Some of the really successful companies in our era, take this on as their, their mode of operation to get outstanding results. So watch for it. All right. Are you ready for this? Week's workout in conversation, practice. Saying the word. Yes. Then add more to whatever part of the statement you can agree with.

For example, yes. The election is very important and I'm confident we both want the best scenario for all involved. Did you see what I did there? I didn't have to agree on what vote I was going to make. We could agree that we both wanted good things to happen. So practice literally saying yes and then validate something that was offered before sharing any negative thoughts.

Another example, if I had to tell someone no, when they asked my permission, I could still say yes. Yes. I understand how important it is for you to take the car tonight. And I'm sorry, it's not available even though I'm not agreeing, you can see that I'm still validating the person's request. They might not be happy about it, but they'll feel more valued than if I just said, no, you can't have the car because.

Be sure to notice when you want to say no and ask yourself why, and instead look for ways to accept whatever part of the person's idea you can and build on that rather than focusing on the negatives. So often that's the first thing we go to is the problem. And we drill down on that rather than celebrating the positive that we.

Keep practicing the skill. And pretty soon you'll be able to clock and under four minute proverbial accept and build mile. And if you want to go the extra smile, try replacing no. And the word, but with yes, and for an entire day, can you go a full 24 hours without saying the word? Be sure to join our conversation on their plate theory, Facebook group, and direct message or comment on the happiness playbook, Instagram, and let us know how you did.

We'll send you some play through swag. If you can last an entire day, if you want more encouragement for your happiness practice, be sure to follow us on social media.

Next week 📍 is our last play through. Which is the sum in the plethora equation of life. Be sure to tune in until then. Remember, life is a team sport and we're so happy to have you play with us here at the play theory bootcamp.

If you're finding value, please share it with your friends and bring them on board. The play theory team catch you next time.

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