I have been juggling and joggling for over 30 years, and both movement disciplines have shaped who I am. It all started when I took a one-hour credit class in Circus at Florida State University in 1979; I had the opportunity to practice different circus skills and had to learn how to juggle in order to pass the class. Well, I passed the class and signed up to be a clown and juggler at FSU's Springtime Circus Show during 1979-81. I loved learning a new skill again, and watching myself improve as I put time and effort into this moving discipline.
I also used to jog along the beaches of Northeast Florida (Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach, and Jacksonville Beach) during the summer months. I've always relied on my character strengths of Creativity and Curiosity, and remember one summer day wanting to try to juggle while I was jogging. I didn't realize until many years later that there was already a name for this unique style of movement: Joggling. I just knew the flow state I would easily reach while bringing together the juggling skill of eye/hand coordination with the aerobic and breathing exercise of jogging.
I decided to move to Asia two weeks after graduating from FSU in 1981, and took my juggling clubs and balls with me. Since I had studied Asian Studies (with a co-major in international business; yes, the "5 year" undergraduate plan), I wanted to live in mainland China. But it was difficult to move to China on my own in 1981, so instead moved to Taipei, Taiwan.
I used to juggle in the streets of Taipei as a street performer (during the days of martial law in Taiwan), and got the idea watching buskers on the streets of San Francisco during a long layover from Florida to Taiwan.
I traveled to mainland China for two months in 1982, after a year of living and learning in Taiwan. Of course, I took my juggling clubs and balls as well as inflatable red shoes and red wig, and entertained thousands during my travels around China (note: I returned in 1987 to visit many of the same families I had met in 1982, and marveled at the changes in their lives in just 5 years; a future blog about life in China in the 1980s!).
During the 1980s I had to leave the island of Taiwan every six months (for visa reasons), and always traveled to a fascinating Asian destination with my juggling props and running shoes with me.
Over the next 30 years I would continue to use Juggling within Team and Leadership Effectiveness workshops, using this skill as a metaphor for Transformation. There is no such thing as "cannot", only "cannot yet"...if you don't try you will never know!
It's also very calming and puts me in a flow state quickly whenever I am joggling.
Joggling Thru The Universe!
Update: I completed a 5-mile Summer Beach Run at Jacksonville Beach on August 26, 2017, and joggled the entire way. I'm proud to say I was the only joggler out of 1500 participants!
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