Yes, and…

I am at a crossroads in life, once again. In some ways, we are always at a crossroads. But, when the decisions require a little more effort than Subway vs. Chipotle, I become a little anxiety-prone and have to ask every person I know for advice. (And speaking of the great Subway vs. Chipotle debate of last week, my apologies to the customers I was polling on that…on the off-chance any of you read this blog.)

In addition to making this “Great Decision of 2012” (as we’ll now refer to this cryptic possible turning point of my life), I have also been thinking, for whatever reason (because I think too much) about the improv philosophy of “Yes, and…” while drawing parallels between it and life. For those of you who don’t know anything about life the world of improv comedy, the “Yes, and…” principle refers to when an improvee (improvist?) vocalizes a decision onstage, his fellow improvitutes are to follow suit and add something if they don’t like the direction the skit is heading, and never, ever, ever shut the original improvonaut down.

An Example:

Ron: This warm, starry night would be perfect for cow-tipping!

Leslie: Yes, and we would get to visit Lil’ Sebastion’s parents on the farm, too.

Ron: Yes, and we haven’t gotten to see them since that miniature horse’s sad passing.

Leslie: Yes, and I can’t believe that happened. Thinking about it now is making me tear up.

Ron: Yes, and that only happens to me when I think about Jerry’s life.

Something like that, I think. (I’m no improvonaut.) My purposed thesis to question the practicality of applying this philosophy in real life decisions. One of my coworkers has told me this is one of the reasons that lead to his long and successful career. First, he never had a boss whose name was not on the door of the store he was working in–which, this idea is already out the door for me as I have no idea who the original JoAnn or Mr. Sears is/was? And secondly, anytime his manager said, “Ken, would you like to move to Austin to open this store?” or, “We’d love you bring you to Los Angeles to head up the new sales team,” his response was, “Yes, and when would you like me there?” He believes that one of the best things about being young, strong-willed and unattached is that the wind can blow you anyway it chooses…and that you should let it.

The Great Decision of 2012 (both my thing and the presidential election) could have a big impact on the world my personal life. I’ve done the pro and con list, googled “decision maker” and typed my question in to an online magic 8 ball, talked both of my mom’s ears off AND cried on the subway like nine times. I’m ready for a big change in one very important area of my life, but not ready to change another equally important area of my life. I could see things working out very well for me in both scenarios, and I also could see a swirling black hole of unhappiness and regret in both decisions. Basically, I do not know what to do and have exhausted each and every option of advice I can get except to translate this mess of a situation into a  confusing, cryptic mass of words and employ strangers blog-reading friends on the internet to have at it. So…GO!

In [Mandy’s] Great Decision of 2012 (NOT the presidential election, just to clarify), Mandy should:

  1. Trust the way her gut is kiiiind of leaning, which is the little bit easier and more comfortable decision, even though she could possibly not get what she wants out of other aspects of her life for some time.
  2. Trust the way her brain is kiiiind of leaning, which requires more effort, but she thinks is a stepping stone in the right direction, although she will kind of feel like a failure in other aspects of life for choosing this.
  3. I have no effing idea what any of this even meaaaans, it is all too cryptic and confusing for my brain!!! (Editor’s note: for the record, this would probably be my pick)
  4. Yes, and Mandy needs some wine.
  5. Yes, and I need some wine.
  6. Obama?