A lot of teachers actually insist that their students follow a rigid formula for writing an essay, in order to help boost their writing scores. The formula usually goes: one-sentence introduction, three paragraphs with one reason each, and a one-sentence conclusion.
Teachers spend so much time teaching and practicing this formula that they neglect to teach more important things like: voice and uniqueness, establishing a purpose for writing and then making strategic decisions that align with the purpose, or organizing ideas in a way that most compels and engages the reader.
I see the same thing happening in the wedding world. There's so much pressure to follow a common formula for weddings. The formula looks something like this:
- Rehearsal dinner for a select few the night before
- Ceremony (with walking down the aisle, single-sex wedding parties, bouquets, readings, vows, and a ring exchange)
- Reception (with toasts, dinner, first dance, dancing, cake-cutting, and something fun like a photo booth or a scrap booking table)
- Brunch the following day
However, I think our weddings could potentially be even more meaningful and even more memorable if we put each piece of the formula under a microscope and genuinely asked these questions:
- Is this tradition something we want to keep?
- Is this tradition something we want to modify?
- Is this tradition something we want to throw out entirely?
- What other entirely new and different elements would we like to add to add to our wedding?