Try 10 things 10 times in 2016

filter out fads and see what sticks

Last year’s resolution was to try out things I’d planned to work on in MA Applied Imagination — and had long been interested in — but never tried properly.

After 6 months of trying this and that, I was unsure what ‘properly’ meant and whether or not I was getting anywhere at all. I decided I should set a target for how many times to try each one and that target was ten.

…essentially because I’d just watched the video below and liked the strong simplicity of it.

Then to round it out, I figured I might as well try ten things, ten times.

That in mind, I drew a rough 10x10 table and stuck it to my bedroom door so that anyone who came by could enquire, nudge me into action and/or hook me up with helpful ideas, opportunities or people.

my mid-year 2015 intervention

It quickly refocused my thinking to stay alert and exploit opportunities when they presented themselves, but also to create opportunities where there were none immediately visible.

A whiff of opportunity

So since this was helpful for me, I wanted to see if it might help others too. Here’s a no-frills 10x10 template for you to print and play with:

“…but what if I can’t think of 10 things?”

Break them down! When I was researching for my MA, I came across the idea that your ‘comfort zone’ is actually best separated into three:

see the full infographic here

So out of the 10 things you might try this year, try picking three each for life, work and play with room for one wildcard to round things off. That way you’ll have a good even spread of goals to give a try across the board.

…but ten’s a lot, where do I start?”

I’ve enjoyed Think Clearly’s handwritten newsletter for months now and this particular issue below gave me some top tips to get my ten off to a great start in 2016:

Volume 4, Issue 414, 2015

Thus, to help me focus my energy early on, within each comfort zone (life, work and play) I’ll pick:

  • one goal I’d love to do…to have fun and get momentum going;
  • one thing I should do (and am perhaps avoiding); as well as
  • something that I could do should the others go well.

This ought to help create a sense of priority when the thought of ten things seems overwhelming. Here’s the resulting juiced-up version:

Every one’s a winner!

No ticks means it might be time to move on

Having had a go at this last year and reflecting on it now, I’m surprised I don’t feel guilty/guiltier about the things I didn’t try as much as I’d have liked.

Instead it seems natural selection meant that some rose to the top, attracting and holding my attention, while others fell to the wayside:

If approached with a what-are-the-things-I’ve-always-wanted-to-do-but-never-got-round-to type of mentality… fewer ticks might be just as informative as a full set.


Hopefully you’ll have a go and, if you do, please keep in touch via @pickandmitch and let me know if, how and when it helps! 😘


Bonus content!

I made a trello template if you’re too digital for print:

tune in to tick ’em off

Music to motivate

You may have noticed the heavy-handed pop hits used in lieu of numerals on the second chart above.

If not, surprise!

…they are all indeed songs and feature on this hand-crafted Spotify playlist for your motivational head-bopping needs.