I owe everything to my theatre experience in high school. It not only saved my sanity when I was younger and gave me a safe place to experience a wide range of emotions; but it gave me a community of misfits in which to play with and belong to.
I learned how to think outside of the box by doing improvisation; how to creatively find a solution and think of various different ways to meet and make an end goal feasible. It's allowed to me come up with methods to get my work done (what do you want and how do you get it?) while ensuring that most of the people I work with felt as though they had won, too. It's taught me how to deal with many different types of personalities. It taught me to think quickly and on my toes. When dealing with people who suffer memory deficits, I'm able to easily go wherever they are and to maintain a conversation that meets their needs. It's taught me that if at first I don't succeed, then instead of giving up, it's simply a flag that reminds me I need to come up with a different path that gets me to my destination.I learned to break things into "beats" or steps and figure out the problem in that moment before moving on to the next step or beat. It's what allowed me to be an effective project or process manager.
It makes me sad whenever I hear about another school or district that is cutting funding to their music or theatre programs... or worse, eliminating them all together. Without theatre, I wouldn't be the person that I am today and that would truly be tragic.