Using Dominoes to Focus Your Efforts


A domino is a small tile that represents the results of the roll of two dice. It has one side that has an arrangement of dots, or pips, and another side that is blank or identical. Dominoes are made of various materials, including wood, bone, silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell (mother of pearl), ivory, and ebony. Some are decorated with inlaid or painted white or black pips, while others are made of frosted glass or crystal. They are usually very thin, but they can be very large.

A set of dominoes consists of 28 unique tiles: twenty-six double-sixes, six triple-sixes, and a single blank tile. The numbered sides of the dominoes are referred to as pips, and each is marked with a number from zero through six. Each pips has a color code associated with that number. A pips-only set is also available, with the dominoes being white with a black background, and is used for games that require only the numbered side of the domino to be used.

While the domino theory is often associated with military strategy, it can be a valuable tool in personal life as well. The idea is that focusing your energy on just one activity can help propel other interests forward in a similar way that a domino chain affects the overall outcome of a game. The concept is especially helpful for those who struggle to manage multiple responsibilities and projects at once.

In a personal context, picking good dominoes means selecting tasks that contribute to your overall goal and are important enough to warrant your attention until they are completed. This can be challenging, as not all tasks are created equal. For example, creating a financial plan or writing an essay may be difficult and require significant time and effort, but these activities are likely to create positive impacts if they are successfully completed. Likewise, the task of finding a job or building a new business may be daunting and seem overwhelming at first, but once you commit to the endeavor and start making progress, other activities will fall into place.

The best part about a domino rally is not watching the dominoes fall one by one, but how they all come together at once. It is the same with a novel, and while it may take some time to put the pieces of your story in place, once you start seeing them come together, you will find yourself looking for more opportunities to add plot beats and watch them all unfold.

This is why when drafting a novel, you should treat every scene like a domino rally. Whether you write your manuscript off the cuff or use a formal outline, you need to focus on putting the most important scenes in the beginning. This will ensure that the story gets off to a great start and that readers will be intrigued enough to keep reading. The rest is just a matter of letting the reaction happen.