Dianne Learns About the Healing Power of Improv

I read about a senior improv class being offered at the Brave New Workshop in the StarTribune. Upon signing up for Everyday Improv Level 1, I never thought that I would end up signing up for future levels, too. Once I started improv, I was hooked. Now I’m thinking about what I am going to do once I graduate the program.

When I decided to take improv, I was interested in finding a way to lighten up. I was a hospice nurse, so my work took its toll on me over time. Due to my line of work, along with personal and health issues I was dealing with, I felt like my mentality had shifted to a darker place. Improv has been a breath of fresh air for me, because it is two hours of concentrated, orchestrated fun.

Not only has improv aided in shifting my mentality to a more positive mindset, it also has been helpful for me health-wise. I was in a car accident a year ago July, and I have been recovering from a brain injury. Improv puts me in unpredictable situations that help me combat the distrust for brain I have recently developed. These classes have been part of my therapy and my healing. From a health perspective, I couldn’t do anything better for my brain than challenging it in such a supportive environment.

After the car accident, I realized that there is an element of uncertainty about the future. Given the serious state of the world, I think that anyone can benefit from the two hours of fun improv provides each week. I always tell people that you do not know what an impact it can have on your life until you give it a chance. My advice is simply try it: what do you have to lose?

– Dianne, BNW SU Student