Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Thin Slicing

When trying to wrap my head round something that is vast and scary, I have started trying the idea of 'Thin Slicing'. Asked for a super-super-summary of most of the reading I have done on happiness and learning, I would say the two key things are (1) create space, and (2) create meaningful connections. We remember things when they are meaningful to us and we have the energy and time to chew. Things are meaningful when they are connected to other things that matter to us.

Thin Slicing involves looking at just one aspect of something, and then looking widely to find how that connects and relates to other things. Same aspect. The Kevin Bacon game, but for ideas. Instead of figuring out how many degrees of separation between an actor and Kevin Bacon, you take something that doesn't seem to matter to you, and find how many connections that do matter to you there are, to get to that idea.

School always used to be divided into subjects. Ideas divided into folders. People divided into tribes. That never worked. Things get fuzzy. Tags or Labels for connections are far more powerful. They allow for us to connect dots and make division obsolete. That is the heart of creativity.

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