When to say yes and when to say no—how do we know?

 Both improv and mindfulness teach us to say yes to the unfolding story of life. But is that the whole story? On this, Monster Baby podcast episode #64, co-hosts Lisa and Ted explore the tension between the poles of yes and no, starting with Lisa’s recent thinking on the subject (1:40). The pair discusses the specific ways improv promotes the tenet of “yes, and” (7:06) and then also introduce the notion of the cheerful “Nope!” (11:02).

Ted wonders if there is any “no” within mindfulness (14:48) and uses the astrological archetypes of Jupiter and Saturn to shed some light on this tension (18:57).  When the pair note that saying yes brings different kinds of results than saying no (24:04), Lisa points out a useful question to ask that might lie behind any yes or no decision (29:28). Ted then brings in a past life reading from many years ago and Lisa applies a bit of Enneagram interpretation—we’re getting far afield now, boys and girls! (33:30)—before the conversation circles back around to the importance of saying “no!” in the face of harassment (40:54).

If there’s something in the episode you’d like to say “yes!” or “no!” to, feel free to write us at

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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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