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Be attentive

August 2nd, 2012 by dimpledbrain

One of the books that I got through abebooks.com is a gem called Improv Wisdom by Patricia Madson.

From Wikipedia: “Improvisational theatre, also known simply as improv, is a form of performance art… Some of the basic skills improvisation teaches actors are to listen and be aware of the other players, to have clarity in communication, and confidence to find choices instinctively and spontaneously“.

Strange, still harping on the same issue (click here) is the peculiar fact that the book that I could buy from the other side of the world, literally (through abebooks.com ) is still cheaper than the one I can get locally. It’s just absurd! I know books are overprinted overseas that it drives down prices. It must then follow that the delta of the book price here and there is the cost for instant gratification, of needing to read the book now. But generally speaking most people should be okay with second hand books (translated as cheaper cost) and book arrival delays. Any entrepreneur that can help crack this problem? Like AirAsia perhaps? Now everyone can read??

[Where were we…that’s right] In short, improv wisdom is the skill most musicians or art performers possess – the ability to adapt to the situation and to change accordingly. Ever notice how if one chord is struck wrongly, the pianist would instinctively move on to the next chord and make it seem as if the entire thing was a planned act? That’s one fat improv technique.

Maybe that explains the fascination I always have with musicians; primarily because I am what they call musically deaf/blind and partly due to this ability to adapt seamlessly to any situation, however bad and unexpected. I for one am such an OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) planner that if something doesn’t go on as planned, I could get agitated. If my life is a stage, I think musicians would have died laughing. Time to change, dimpledbrain, time to change.

And what is improv wisdom you ask? It’s the compiled wisdom of what all these musicians do everyday.

Be attentive is one of the improv wisdom being discussed in the book. Some of the key ideas:

  1. Cultivate awareness, for life is attention. Notice everything especially the details. Start remembering names and faces. Observe other people (this is my personal favourite) – what are they doing, their behaviour, mood, body language etc.
  2. This moment happens only once. Be alert. Observe what’s happening around us. Listen carefully to others.
  3. Multitasking is overrated. Do one thing at a time. Less hasty.

And then life will transform as our attention is shifted outward.

Less self conscious, less hesitation.

But one timely strike and kill with one blow.

And happiness will flow in.

It’s entirely justifiable to argue that dimpledbrain is not attentive enough to talk about attentiveness but my thought is this: the difference between an accomplished writer or a successful person and me is that he or she would tell you ‘what is or what should be’ while I can invite you to journey the process together with me. We would probably reach at the same conclusion but the difference is that I am telling you even before it happens. Paradoxically, every great person starts off discovering great things by having a little faith first. It’s faith that Edison discovered the light bulb whatever Flat Earth Society is telling you.

So my friends, be attentive and have a little faith too, wouldn’t you?


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2 responses so far ↓

  • Dimpled brain’s quote ‘I for one am such an OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) planner that if something doesn’t go on as planned, I could get agitated. If my life is a stage, I think musicians would have died laughing. Time to change, dimpledbrain, time to change.’
    my reply: that’s called discipline my dear.. lol!! n btw, if u notice, musicians practice all their life.. all stage players’ does.. their discipline is beyond words.. but of coz having said, they adapt to situation(s) should necessary.. im sure no matter how bad ur OCD is, u adapt as well, no?! lol.. we adapt don’t we if we r forced to do so..

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