Derek Sivers
from the book “How to Live”:

Here’s how to live: Let randomness rule.


We think we see patterns and causes.
Really there are none.
We think events are meaningful.
Really they’re just coincidence.
We’re not used to the logic of probability.
Life is more random than it seems.

Identical twins were separated at birth and raised on opposite sides of the world.
They met later in life, and found that they had freakishly identical preferences and circumstances.
What you think is free will might actually be your DNA.
Where you go, what you do, and what you want are accurately predicted by algorithms.
You are less random than you seem.

So randomize your life.
Use a random generator — an app, a roll of the dice, or a shuffled deck of cards — to make all of your life’s decisions.
Choose a life where you choose nothing.
Let the random generator decide what you do, where you go, and who you meet.

It’ll scramble your habits.
It’ll break the myth of causality.
It’ll guide you to see places you’d never ordinarily see, and do what you never would have done.

Randomness keeps your mind open and observant.
You can’t predict, so you see clearly.
You can’t use old solutions and rules-of-thumb.
You can’t blame karma, astrology, demons, saints, anyone or anything else.
You can’t think there’s a master plan.

Instead, you’ll calculate probability.
You’ll be hyper-aware that statistics apply to all of us, and we’re more average than we think.
Life is determined not by causes, but by randomness and odds.
By taking a minute to do the math, you’ll have a clearer understanding of why things are the way they are.

Let your random generator choose what you wear and how you cut your hair.
Let it send you to events you ordinarily wouldn’t have attended, including classes to learn skills you ordinarily wouldn’t have learned.
You’ll become a member of groups you never would have chosen.
Eventually, you’ll look, act, and socialize very differently than your previous self.
You won’t define yourself by these things anymore, since you didn’t choose them.

When talking with people, ask deep open-ended questions — like “What’s your biggest regret?” — that will lead to unexpected stories.
When ordering in a restaurant, ask them to surprise you.
When doing creative work, let the random generator make your artistic decisions, shaking up your usual style.

Let your random generator decide where you live every year.
That increases the randomness of everything else.

Ask anyone “Why?” on any subject, and they’ll make up explanations.
They think everything has a reason, and won’t believe it’s random.
You’ll know everything is random, and won’t believe it has a reason.

Randomness helps you learn acceptance.
You can’t take the blame for failures.
You can’t take credit for successes.
You can’t regret what you didn’t cause.

How liberating to not decide and not predict anything.
Stoics and Buddhists work hard to feel indifferent to outcomes.
But you’ll feel detachment as a natural side effect of every day being random.
Since nothing has consequences, you’ll greet everything with healthy indifference.
Neither upset nor joy — just seeing it as it is.
Thanks to randomness, you’ll know that none of it has meaning.

You’ll be living a lesson that everyone should learn.
Random stuff happens.
All you can control is your response.
Every day, you’ll practice how to react to chaos: with dignity, poise, and grace.