DIY Life: Lifehacking 101

James Norris seemed a rather interesting personality. He will be conducting a 30-minute “DIY Life: Lifehacking 101” workshop at this weekend’s inaugural Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2012.

Read on to find out how different this workshop will be compared to the others.

The workshop

You will not be getting a physical make out of this workshop. Instead, James promises you a practical and interactive workshop on some of the best ways of “hacking your life” to maximise your personal growth. It will cover High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) to help you spend less time in the gym, the 6 Second Pause to help you manage your emotions, the 5:1 Ratio to improve your relationships, a formula from a behavioural psychologist that may change your life (B=MAT), and many others.

The facilitator

When I checked out James’ website, he has a page on his bio with a nice word cloud introduction. “Personal”, “Time”, “Focus”, “Everything” and “Life” stood out, amidst many other words that describe him. It seemed that he is someone who valued life and personal time a lot, but he is also very focused so that he can fully utilise his time (my interpretation).

James Norris’ Personal Word Cloud

James told us that he has given this talk or variants of it a few times at Barcamps and they were always well received. He has been speaking on the topic for a few years now. If you are wondering what are Barcamps, google it on the internet, but in short, it is a user-generated conference session where participants gather prepared with topics they would like to talk on, but whether they get to speak or not would depend on whether they get a vote from the other participants. Interesting, isn’t it?

When asked what inspired him to conduct this talk, James shared that he enjoyed doing it because he can summarise in 30 minutes the highlights of what he took a decade to learn, something which appealed to him, a self-proclaimed efficiency-and-effectiveness-junkie. Though amused, I think such efficiency would definitely appeal to many others as well, in today’s society. Isn’t it? Looking deeper, you can also see a person who is very keen to share his knowledge with us.

James also shared that he is also a maker although he usually use the term builder. He hangs out with people from Hackerspace a lot and sees awesome stuff happening in Singapore, e.g. a window farm in a Raffles office. He just felt that the Singaporean makers should receive more publicity. When we asked how Singaporeans should be encouraged to make stuff, he jokingly said to hand out a homework assignment with two words on it: “Make something”. I cannot help but smile at that.

Like many other makers, James advised that if you would like to make something, do not wait. You can even find someone to build with, but the crucial point is to do it now.

To learn more about James Norris and his project, check out www.jamesnorris.org/personalgrowth and www.selfspark.com.

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