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 How did you get here: did you improvise?

It’s fun to ask people at meetings how they got there. They usually answer with details of a walk, a car drive or an adventure with public transport. Someone occasionally asks how far back I want them to begin. “I was born in London in 19….”

If we do go further back than today, we find journeys even more amazing and surprising than those inflicted on us by our local rail network. It’s very rare that anyone reports that their life followed a clear plan that they set out years earlier. It’s the surprises, spontaneous decisions and happy accidents that turn out to be the most decisive.

When you think of the pivotal points in your life, to what extent was improvisation at play? We all improvise every day. Few conversations follow a script. We are making decisions in the moment at many crucial junctures. And our lives may or may not go according to plan.

It makes sense to understand the extent to which our lives are improvisational, to build our skills of responding and adapting, and to put a vocabulary and framework to these everyday realities.


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