You don’t have to be an actor or a comedian to take an improv comedy class. Improv comedy classes are fun and come with a ton of benefits that will help you feel more fulfilled in your personal and professional life. Improv also teaches you a ton of things to help you improve your dating skills and reach your interpersonal goals.
In this article, I’ll break down 15 specific reasons that you should take an improv class, along with ways you can incorporate improv into your daily life and dates.
Reason #1: Improv teaches You How to Maintain Eye Contact
Improv teaches you how to maintain eye contact with a girl without being creepy.
When you’re on a date and nervous, it’s understandable that you would avert your gaze. But avoiding eye contact hinders your chances of making a connection with someone because you end up coming off as disengaged and rude.
Improv forces you to make eye contact with everyone you’re in a scene with. Over time, eye contact becomes more natural and allows you to be present on dates and in other areas of your life.
Reason #2: Improv Teaches You How to be Charismatic
One of the myths associated with charisma is that you either have it or you don’t. In reality, everyone is capable of being charismatic and improv allows you to find your inner charmer by teaching you two things — to be more present and aware.
Reason #3: Improv Gets You Out of Your Head
Being present and listening is a requirement in improv. If you don’t do those things, your improv skit or game will fall apart. Practicing this is great for your dating life because it will teach you how to get out of your head and listen to the other person.
One of the reasons dates often go awry is due to nerves and rumination. When you’re wrapped up in your own thoughts and don’t listen to the person you’re with, you can’t engage and build a connection.
Improv teaches you how to naturally decrease the internal dialogue and incessant chatter many of us deal with when facing nerve-wracking situations. By quieting that chatter, you’ll be able to be more present and confident in a variety of situations.
Reason #4: Improv Teaches You How to Go with the Flow
If you mess up during an improv game or activity (and trust me when I say that you will mess up), it’s never a big deal and can actually add to the fun and humor. This will help you to not sweat it if you experience an embarrassing moment on a date (hi, spilling wine or food, slipping on a crack in the sidewalk or involuntary belch).
In fact, improv shows you how to make the best out of a situation by treating things with good humor. You’re going to find yourself smiling and laughing constantly during class, and the simple act of smiling alone can ease stress and increase confidence.
Carrying that good nature and ease to a date will help to not only alleviate your nerves but make your date feel comfortable as well.
Reason #5: Applied Games and Activities Teach You How to Stop Judging Yourself
A really special thing about the applied games and activities in improv is that — although there are general rules for everyone in each game — the way that games are executed give you a chance to shine and celebrates you just being yourself. This helps you to increase confidence and ditch the criticism.
You’ll find that many people actually come to improv class to work on people skills, reduce social anxiety and to get better at things like dating. Regardless of which improv class you choose, a common thread throughout all improv communities is the importance of not judging people and celebrating uniqueness.
Reason #6: Improv Teaches You How to Celebrate Failure
There is something in improv called the “failure bow.” The failure bow occurs when you mess up a scene. Instead of suffering embarrassment over this perceived “failure,” improv class encourages you to celebrate this failure by exclaiming “I failed!” and taking a bow. Other members of improv class will loudly cheer the failures.
In an article from Psychology Today, Chicago therapist and director of the Panic Anxiety Recovery Center (PARC) participating in exercises like this over time can do more than ease anxiety at the moment — they can actually change the brain. Negative thinking patterns are reduced over time with improv. Moreover, if you suffer from social anxiety disorder, improv paired with cognitive behavioral therapy can significantly reduce your symptoms so that you can lead a happier, social and more fulfilling life.
So how are things like the failure bow helpful when it comes to dating? Well, to succeed in dating, you have to fail a lot. A lot of people avoid dating out of a fear of rejection but in reality, getting rejected is an important part of growth and ultimately becoming success during the dating process.
You have to get comfortable with rejection if you’re going to put yourself out there and eventually find a long-term, compatible partner. Improv helps you get comfortable with it much faster.
Reason #7: Improv is Naturally Interactive and Engaging
When it comes to dating, you want to put yourself in environments that allow you to be naturally interactive and engaging with the person you’re with. Sitting interview-style at a restaurant on a first date or having a date in a dry environment that doesn’t stimulate you is a breeding ground for awkwardness.
Improv shows you how to place yourself in situations that allow the conversation to flow easily in order to build deeper connections with people.
Reason #8: Improv is a Good Way to Meet New People and Make New Friends
You could definitely meet a woman in your improv class that you want to ask out, but that’s not all there is when it comes to the social aspects of improv. Improv is a great way to expand your social network and build lasting relationships that don’t need to be romantic.
A lot of women like to meet men through mutual friends, so this can give you an advantage. Improv allows you to open up to people and at some point you can mention that you’re single and ready to be setup (say this under your breath to limit your neediness). But most importantly it’s always great to be able to interact with people and be vulnerable in a safe environment.
Reason #9: Improv Gives You Fun Games to Play That You Can Use on Your Dates
Guess what? Those improv games don’t have to stay in the classroom. You can use them on dates to help you increase chemistry and build a connection with the girl you’re with. Take a look at a few games you can use below.
The game is this:
- I give you a topic and you name three things related to that topic.
- Then, you give me a topic and I say that things related to that topic
- We go back and forth as fast as possible.
For example, if the topic was something like “Things you’d find on the boat,” you could say something like “boat, buoy and life vest.” If the topic was something like “Three places you’d like to visit,” you could say something like, “Thailand, a chocolate factory and heaven.”
This game is particularly fun on dates because it helps both of you get out of your heads and simply enjoy the moment. It demonstrates to a woman that you’re playful and know how to have fun. This is going to win you major points, because you are already setting yourself apart from 99% of men who have no clue how to make a woman laugh. Plus, it’s creative, unique, and fun!
Yes, and…Not Yes, But…
This game teaches you the importance of not limiting your thoughts or the thoughts and ideas of others. It also shows you how to build upon people’s ideas, rather than take away from them.
In short, when you play this game, you and the person you’re with become less judgmental and controlling.
To play this game:
- Decide who will be partner 1 and who will be partner 2.
- Partner 1 and 2 are planning a party.
- Partner 1 comes up with an idea and partner 2 responds to that idea with “Yes, but….” and then gives a reason why the idea won’t work.
- Partner 1 then has to think up a different idea and offers it to partner 2.
- Again, partner 2 says “yes, but…” and the game continues on and on in the same fashion.
There is another game that follows this same type of framework, except instead of saying, “Yes, but” you say “Yes, and…” This allows you to build upon the first partner’s idea instead of opposing it. You could take the party scenario from before and notice how — instead of needing to constantly come up with new ideas — the party plan grows richer and fuller. As this continues, both partners continue to add to their party plan ideas and the plan grows fuller and richer.
You’ll notice that this version of this game is easier because everyone is in agreement. Ideas aren’t discouraged and people begin to flourish with new courage and excitement. This game can be helpful in dating but even more so in life and work. When you encourage the ideas of others by adding to them, it facilitates cooperation, excitement, and co-creation. The end result is something that could not have been created by just one person.
I actually use the skills gleaned from this type of activity when coaching my clients. It can be difficult for anyone to step outside of their comfort zone, so I use this tool to help my clients when they are reticent about trying different activities, fearing things will go awry.
For example, let’s say I suggest a client tries out a Meetup group that goes hiking on Mount Tam and my client says “Yeah, but there’s probably not even any girls in those groups.” This forces me to counter with a new idea like, “Ok, well you could try sending 15 messages a day to different women on dating apps.”
This sometimes is countered with, “Yeah, but women don’t ever reply so there’s no point.”
Do you see how this cycle could go on and on forever with no action? That’s why I encourage a “yes, and” mindset with my clients. When that type of client is adopted, we can make rapid progress.
Imagine if the above answers to my suggested options were things like, “Yes, I could try a hiking Meetup and I could look to see which hiking group has the most gorgeous women in it.” Or, “Yes, I could message 15 women a day on dating apps and I could try adding in new apps like Bumble, Hinge, and Coffee Meets Bagel.” Now you’ve got forward motion that builds on itself quickly and effectively.
When you adopt a mindset that allows you to see opportunity instead of restraints, you become more successful in all areas of your life.
The 1,2, 3 game taught me that it was ok to make mistakes, which is so important when it comes to dating, confidence and growth.
Here are the rules of the game:
- One person says 1, the other partner says 2.
- Then the first partner says 3, and partner two say 1 again.
- This will go in a circle with each of you moving faster and faster until someone messes up.
- When you mess up, celebrate the failure with a failure bow and remind yourself it’s ok to fail, especially at something so wonderfully silly.
- In the next round, clap for 1, and say 2 and 3 and keep going around and around as quickly as you can.
- Next, clap for 1, snap for 2 and say 3 and go around and around as fast as you can, while still celebrating your failures with a failure bow together.
- Next, clap for 1, snap for 2 and stomp for 3 and go around and around again.
- Finally, return to the first segment where you just said “1,2,3” in volley as quickly as you could.
Notice how much easier it is at the end of the game as compared to the beginning of the game. That’s because you learned to celebrate failure together and you got out of your head and into the present moment. This game also requires you to make strong eye contact with your partner. Notice how much easier it became to make eye contact, be fully present in the moment, and to listen and respond to what was actually happening.
Afterwards, congratulate yourself! This is just one of many improv games that can help you improve your dating skills.
Reason #11: Improv Teaches You How to Not Give a Fu*k What Other People Think
It may sound cliche, but one of the biggest things that could be holding you back in the dating world is yourself. If you are constantly worried about being liked and wondering what people think of you, you end up putting out negative energy that turns into a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Rumination and self-doubt prevents people from seeing who you truly are and who you truly are is someone worthy of great friends, a fulfilling life and a compatible partner.
Improv teaches you to not give a fu*k about what other people think and this allows you to live authentically.
Reason #12: Improv Teaches You How to be Spontaneous
The spontaneity that comes along with improv classes is a fantastic tool to improve your dating skills. Anyone can take a woman out to a happy hour or a bite to eat and sit across from her interview-style. In fact, when it comes to women you are interested in, there’s a good chance that a majority of guys she goes out with have basically the same date planned.
Improv is all about spontaneity, which allows you to learn how to be spontaneous in your dating life. This will make you stand out to women in the dating world and can help you reach your dating goals faster.
Reason #13: Improv Teaches You How to be Playful on a Date
Playfulness is an extremely important — and often overlooked — quality when it comes to a spectacular date and fulfilling relationship.
According to an article from Psychology Today, being playful is underrated and extremely important when you’re an adult. Moreover, playfulness during a date can actually increase chemistry and make you seem super sexy on a date.
The reason for said sex appeal is because:
- It makes you come off as nonaggressive, which puts a woman’s mind at ease.
- It exudes youthfulness and health.
Improv gives you the tools to be playful and spontaneous so that you can apply it to your dating journey.
Reason #14: Improv Teaches You to Let Go of Control and Judgment
Sometimes we become so fixated on being “in control,” that we forget to breathe and simply enjoy the moment. Improv teaches you how to ditch criticism and judgment so that you can let go of the reigns and allow things to happen organically.
Reason #15: Improv Teaches You How to Not Take Life Too Seriously
This is one of the best and most important lessons that come with improv. Don’t take life too seriously. Life is short and it’s easy to let pass us by while we are all collectively deciding the best way to handle #adulting.
Improv allows you to get in touch with your passions, playfulness, and spontaneity so that you can get the most out of each moment.
Improve Your Dating Skills Even Further
Improv was one of the many things that I discovered during my 100-date experiment. Since then, I’ve been using my expertise to help men like you find long-term, compatible partners.
If you’re ready to overcome your personal dating roadblocks and reach your goals, head over to my calendar and book a new client 1-on-1 Skype session with me today. During our session, we will create an action plan tailored to your individual needs.
You can also check out my comprehensive online dating course for men. The course has all the steps you need to stay out of the friend-zone and find a gorgeous, high-value girlfriend!
Finally, my Dating Profile Services will quickly improve the number of responses to your outgoing messages, the amount of incoming messages you receive, your overall profile views, and more.