Getting to Yes, And

Clay Drinko: Play Your Way Sane


Clay Drinko

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Kelly talks improvisation and play with Clay Drinko whose new book is called "Play Your Way Sane: 120 Improv Inspired Exercises To Help You Calm Down, Stop Spiraling And Embrace Uncertainty."

Although this is a book about improv and play, it’s also a serious book about how you used improv as a kind of self therapy, right?

“It was right after I wrote my academic book about how improv affects the mind that I felt - and I talk about this in the new book - really hypocritical because I knew I could do better. I knew I was better when I was improvising and none of it translated to my day to day life. I was still a perfectionist and anxious and overthinking and worried. And I've spoken to a lot of improvisers that have really similar stories and that's why they're drawn to improv. In improv, it feels so great to take a break from that anxiety and really be in the moment with people on stage. And so this was really my attempt to feel that for myself;  to feel that flow and connection and creativity in my everyday life and to help other people feel the same thing.”

I often refer to improvisation as human being practice, right?

“So much of it as I was writing the book seems so obvious. Because it's things that your parents tell you when you're a little kid, you know, treat people the way you want to be treated and make sure you listen and make sure you share. Improv gives us the set of rules and principles that gives us permission to really practice those things that seem like they should be obvious in our adult lives. And I think that's why I'm so drawn to improv. That's why I will never get tired of writing about it and approaching it from different angles is because it’s just a ready made roadmap to help us.”

I think in many ways, you’ve created a life handbook based in improv.

“It's not  setting out to be a self help book that you read it and then, you know, you're a millionaire and you're so happy. It's something that I hope people will  integrate into their lives from now on, because we're never going to be finished. I'm never going to be cured and not anxious and always in the moment, but approaching it through games makes it fun for me to try to do better every day.”

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