2016-06-01 A life on four pages

An interesting way to get perspective on your life:

  1. Take four pieces of paper
  2. Divide each paper into 24 boxes
  3. Write a year in each box, starting with your birth year
  4. Note in each box what you did that year
  5. Now you have your entire life in front of you on the table (assuming you grow very old)
    • What patterns emerge in boxes you have filled out?
    • What do you want the remaining boxes to contain?

When you write down the years, a trick is to do it with a space-filling curve, such that things that lasts more than a year is still lumped together, ie.:

 35 36 37 40 41 42 | 55 56 57 58
 34 33 38 39 44 43 | 54 53 60 59
 31 32 27 26 45 48 | 49 52 61 62
 30 29 28 25 46 47 | 50 51 64 63
 ------------+-----+ 71 70 65 66
 19 20 21 24 |#####| 72 69 68 67
 18 17 22 23 +-----+------------
 15 16 03 02 | 95 94 73 76 77 78
 14 13 04 01 | 96 93 74 75 80 79
 11 12 05 06 | 91 92 87 86 81 82
 10 09 08 07 | 90 89 88 85 84 83

(Edit: notice the space filling curve above has an error, – it should have started in the field labelled 02, and ended in the one labelled 95, – I sketched it out too quickly)

With four pieces of paper, each box is large enough that you can fill in many major events, and at the same time it is small enough that you get the big overview.