Here's where I'm at after the first week of learning to juggle.
The first day I watched a 2 minute how-to video, and worked on learning the basics for an hour. The next 6 days I picked up the beanbags every time I had a spare few minutes, which added up to about 15-20 minutes per day.
As you can see, I still have a good deal to learn, but after 10 years of having put off learning, I feel pretty good about how much one can learn with a little bit of effort and a short amount of time.
Most parties are about getting together with friends, eating and drinking until you're waddling around the room, and creating new memories. But what if you're trying to bring about change? What if you want to move forward and let go of all those things anchoring you to the past?
You throw a Shred Party.
Here's the scoop: a Shred Party involves 1 or more friends and yourself and the biggest paper shredder you can afford/borrow/steal (but seriously, don't try to steal a shredder because they're crazy heavy). You and your friends then collect all of the photos, old journals, old mix CDs, old legal documents, etc, along with a healthy amount of food and drinks (and background music) and go nuts.
It may seem like a strange idea at first, especially if you're the sentimental type, but if you think about it, you'll see why it makes a lot of sense.
The most difficult hurdle to overcome when you're trying to make a positive change in your life are all the artifacts of your current self. Each of these objects have or have had some meaning (even if it's not precious, there was obviously SOME reason you felt you had to keep it around) at some point, but if you are moving on you'll need the room in your emotional storage space for NEW meaningful items. New photos and mix CDs and letters from friends and family.
Take a second to choke down the 'Colin's heartless' comment you were about the mumble. I'm about to explain why this is worth the trade off.
On one side of the equation, you have these objects that may or may not have real intrinsic value, but mostly have what I call 'traditional value.' This means that they are not valuable unto themselves, but you keep them around because from time to time you may look at them, or even just feel comforted knowing that you've got them stored away somewhere; in a shoebox in the closet or in a Rubbermaid container in the garage.
What you're trading for in this case is the ability to move on, to let go of any physical manifestations of the past so that you can take what you've learned and apply it. Make no mistake, this is a very difficult thing to do when you're surrounded by people, places and things that you've been around for a long time (which is why those people who stuck around their hometown after high school are more or less the same as when you last saw them).
Remember, too, that we live in the future. Any photos you want to keep around can be scanned and put on your computer (or on the Internet, where they won't even clutter your computer's hard drive). All those memories? You've still got 'em. They're in that computer in your skull!
A few weeks ago, my ex and I had a Shred Party and both had a fantastic time. Among other things, I unloaded old photos, client files, sketchbooks and mix CDs (to push me forward in finding new music, creating new illustrations, taking new photos and taking on new clients), while she got rid of her old head shots, business documents, Post-It notes and journal entries. We both felt amazing and very light afterward, and would recommend it to anyone and everyone, especially if you're trying to catalyze change in your life.
At the top of this post is a video put together from footage of our Shred Party. Take a look if you have the chance, and if you throw your own Shred Party, record the process and post your video in the comments!
What do you think? Are you open to having a Shred Party? Think it's pointless/heartless/just not cool? Let us know in the comments below!