… ok, perhaps not an entirely new concept. Some of you may have read the 1971 novel The Diceman by Luke Rhinehart and may even have experimented with deciding on your next action by the roll of a die. But I think very few people have ever made it into a systematic way of living their life.
With the help of the members of this website’s General Forum (see the threads Shades of the Diceman and Shades of the Diceman - Part 2) I have been trying out a new concept in time-management. Basically the idea is to use a normal task list but, instead of selecting the next task off the list yourself, you select it by using a random number generator.
Although it’s early days yet, what we have discovered is that the randomness has some very positive effects:
- It takes out all the personal decisions which are hugely influenced by emotions, fear, laziness, habits and just general human fallibility - and instead presents the next thing to do without any attempt to justify it. Instead of spending time and energy deciding how urgent or important or pressing or scary or avoidable a task is, you just forget all that and accept a purely random decision.
- What we are finding is that stress levels fall and resistance is reduced almost to zero. We seem to have taken the “friction” out of deciding what to do next.
It is however important to design a system which will channel the randomness so that it generates a productive result. In my next post, I will describe the system I am using at the moment. This has truly amazed me by how effective it is, how easy to work and how comprehensive.