The Changed Podcast with Aden Nepom
The Changed Podcast with Aden Nepom
Episode 9: Founder of Breakthrough Play, Gary Ware

Gary Ware shares the story of how he came to be the founder of Breakthrough Play on this week’s episode of the Changed Podcast

Gary Ware is the Founder of Breakthrough Play. He is a self proclaimed Creativity Catalyst who helps professionals reach their breakthrough moment while playing and having a great time. 

Gary Ware, founder of Breakthrough Play
Gary Ware, Founder of Breakthrough Play

Like many of my guests Gary Ware has years of experience on stage as an improv performer. And like many of the improvisers I know (myself included) thought initially of improv as “just a hobby.” However, after experiencing burnout in his pursuit for success and happiness, he realized that what was missing was Play.

Gary points out that as adults, we often feel that “play” is childish or something that is distracting. Society plays pressures on us, making us feel like in order to be productive, we need to be glued to a desk for hours on end… but playing is actually incredibly valuable. Joy, fun and silliness actually help us learn, explore new concepts, develop resilience and much, much more.

Take aways from this episode

Life is going to happen. Some changes are easy and some are hard. There are a couple of things you can take from the world of improv theatre, to help you process changes as they happen:

Play the scene you’re in…

Sometimes we have the luxury to sit back and grieve that this moment is no longer the previous moment, or worse that this moment isn’t the moment we expected it to be! BUT most of the time, when faced with less than ideal changes like sudden job loss, or losing your home it can be helpful to take a pause and ask yourself what the offers are in the moment. In improv an offer is anything you can simply take and use. So regrouping and processing is also about what can you play with as you move forward.

If you’re having trouble making a choice with the options you have, give yourself more options…

When Gary lost his business, the choices seemed to be binary: either find a new job, or seek unemployment… BUT there were a lot more options than first met the eye, and thanks to jumping outside of the circle of expectations (another term from the world of improv) Gary actually jumped a bit closer to what has felt like an even more satisfying heart-driven career.

Be a human…

You may not have time to grieve your losses in the moment, but at some point your emotions will require your attention. It’s a good thing. Allow yourself to process. And then take your lessons learn and move forward.

Helpful Links

Click HERE to learn more about Gary’s work at Breakthrough Play.

Check out Gary’s TEDx on the value of play, entitled “How Play Saved my Life” by Clicking HERE.

You can Click HERE for last week’s incredible conversation with Todd Stashwick.

And if you prefer video to audio, the slightly longer, and way less edited version of our conversation lives on our Patreon page along with the longer and less edited versions of all The Changed Podcast episodes.

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