Wednesday, March 4, 2009


My first entry in my "List of 101 things to do in 1001 days" says "Create and use a blog about doing a 101 challenge."

Well, here we are.

If I could be bothered I'd put in counters and tickers and trackers and little bits of PHP that'll say "OMG: Mike only has N days:hours:minutes to complete X tasks!" with an increasingly red font as N approaches zero, but frankly I can't be bothered (which is also why I'm hosting this on blogger rather than knocking up a Drupal or roll-my-own Ruby on Rails type affair on a different server). This is a point to note: I really am quite lazy and whilst I won't expend more effort on not doing something than actually getting up off my backside and doing it, I will take a long hard look at something that I may need to do to work out the shortcut-to-inconvenience tolerance ratio.

But, what is a 101 challenge? Y'see, I wasn't sure - I'd seen references to it every now and then - and then I met Alex Wolf who mentioned she was doing 101 things in 1001 days. Rightyho, I thought at the time, and took a swig of my tea wondering when this photo would actually be taken. Then the rest of the day happened, and I forgot to go back to Alex for more details so I then had to go and do a bit of research into what this thing was by myself.

It turns out there's a bit of a community for people doing this thing: Day Zero Project. The wording they have on there is fairly straightforward:
The Mission: Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria: Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on my part).

Fairynuff. I can see why 1001 days is appropriate; some tasks do, by their very nature, take a lot of time. Some tasks will be one-offs, but many will be habit-forming (with a bit of luck) and others will involve waiting for something to come to fruition. Interesting idea.

Then, of course, I made the fatal mistake: thinking "What would I do for my 101 things?"

When you get to that point, it's like Ruben in Ocean's Eleven saying "You'll need a crew as crazy as you are. So, who have you got in mind?" and it's just a case of working out the details because you know damn well that it's going to happen.

At time of writing this I have 62 things, but by the time I've finished inputting all of the detailed entries into this thing we call Blog I should have finished the list. If you want to comment with suggestions, please feel free to do so but I'm trying to avoid generic ideas ("be happy" or "grow something" seems a bit woolly to me), so don't be offended if I think your suggestion is too close in spirit to one already on the list.

I have to thank Alex for kickstarting my brain into doing this, although perhaps "thank" is too optimistic a word. Saying that, her 101 Strategy document has been very useful whilst dreaming up this thing, so a completely unconditional thanks is appropriate for that.

When I start doing this in earnest I'll put up start and finish dates - technically I suppose I've started already, but *ssh* - and maybe, yes, the countdown timer might be there.

Dear suffering $deity. What have I got myself into?

1 comment:

  1. Good luck with finishing your list! If you have any questions you thuink I might be able to help with then shout. Thanks again for the link back to me, I love the idea I might inspire other people to quantify and achieve their goals. :)