A few days before the clutter-clearing workshop at Clark College, I emailed all the enrollees and asked them to bring a small object from home that they knew they should let go of, but just couldn’t, yet. We would have a show & tell, their stories fueling a discussion of all the reasons we hold on to things.
Before the show & tell we discuss how our Stuff is always talking to us, subliminally and often reproachfully. This is one reason why we feel so relaxed on vacation; we are away from our Stuff and all those subliminal messages.
“When you’re on vacation,” I ask them, “have you ever missed your collection of ceramic frogs back home?” Wouldn’t you know, a gal in the front row then reached into her purse and pulled out her show & tell item. You guessed it: a ceramic frog.
Another student, a realtor, brought a heap of about 50 unlabeled house keys which she had carried in her car for years, to houses she had sold years and years ago, just in case… well, in case she wasn’t sure what.
And my favorite moment of the class was when a student used his helmet as a representation of the motor scooter he’d had for three years and only ridden 224 miles, the last 4 miles of which were to our class. Amazingly, another student had been looking for a scooter, and after class they set about negotiating the transfer!
If you missed this class, I’ll be doing it again October 28. Contact me for more information: (firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-903-3659).