Speaking up is one of the most natural—and most frightening—things we humans do. With Ted back from a month-long voice and speech training in Manhattan and Lisa back from a few weeks at summer camp, Episode #49 takes on the topic of stepping up and speaking out. Ted opens the conversation with his reasons for proposing the topic and why speech represents a fundamental human expression (2:20). Lisa discusses when and where she’s comfortable and not comfortable speaking up (6:45) and initiates some musings on how improv training helps us jump into getting our voice into the world (10:46). Ted introduces the ways that body awareness can affect our speech (15:04) and how speaking up can serve as another mindfulness practice (18:11). The pair consider whether jokes and humor help or hurt more serious moments of conversation (19:21) and give a nod to the Buddhist principles of Right Speech (22:59). Lisa acknowledges how many women (and some men) have real difficulties learning to speak with volume (25:36) and Ted mentions how speaking through to the ends of sentences can serve as a continuity of mindfulness practice (30:23). The pair discuss how mindfulness helps us speak more effectively (35:36) and loosens our ego attachment to whatever words come out of our mouths (39:40). They explore the ways in which improv helps you know when to step up and speak out (45:46) and close with a little riff on Vikings and the gospels (50:15).


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San Francisco improvisors Ted DesMaisons and Lisa Rowland explore the beautiful, surprising and unruly intersections between mindfulness and improvisation as they seek to befriend that oft-hidden and sometimes scary part of all of us that can lead to a life well-lived.

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