Plausible Distractions

I came up with this phrase today but it’s an old, old concept, once you know what to look for.

It comes down to this:

Often we fail by doing what is most important!

Huh? That’s right. We engage in something which is so easy to sell to ourselves as vital, significant and part of the way forward. But it isn’t. In fact it’s a distraction form what we should be doing.

I’m a writer, so this applies especially to me: so long as I am writing, progress is good, right?


There are things we all have to do in life. One particular anchor is the next step in our master life plan. That must take priority over all other activity. So, if we let something get in the way of ding it, we are letting ourselves be distracted.

Here’s today’s example. I was talking with a colleague and proudly boasted I wrote 11,000 words yesterday. That’s impossible, of course. I wrote about 4,000 new words and edited/rewrote another 7,000.

Rewriting and editing is still very demanding and, I would guess, about 65% of the effort of fresh, creative writing. So yesterday was a very formidable output indeed. I doubt even 0.5% of writers who have ever lived could equal that (nobody before the age of word processors).

But actually, I hurt myself. Because I didn’t do something even more important….

I am seeking a dozen or so unique individuals to join me, to become my “Knights Of Serendipity”, to spread the unique practical philosophy system I have developed. I want to change the world; in fact I could save the world. I could if enough people adopted my simple but effective strategies for getting saner, more valuable, outcomes.

I don’t think we need political solutions, definitely not religious solutions; both of these the mainly the problem that we have. We need rationality and reason, free from aberration (free from “aberrant common sense” or un-sanity, as Alfred Korzybski put it).

I can’t do this alone. But as the stock of writings, concepts, tricks and techniques rises well beyond the 2 million words limit, I should concentrate only on finding those people who want to join in and share the burden of teaching others what best to do.

I need my “Knights Of The Round Table” guys for my Conceptual Avalon right now.

Yet I am letting myself be distracted by just writing more and more. Look at it this way: if I wrote 11,000 words a day, or even just 1,000 words a day, for the rest of my life, I would fail.

So writing isn’t really carrying me forward. It’s finding those key souls with the insight, verve, willingness and financial freedom to want to become Knights Of Serendipity that will take me forwards.

Think of it like a general, who has his troops undergoing trials and field exercises for months and eventually years.

That’s not going to win any battles. After a certain shut off, exercises is a distraction from the main thrust of going out and attacking the enemy!

Yet exercises can be dressed up as being terribly important; vital even.

Hence my term plausible distraction.


1 thought on “Plausible Distractions

  1. Dear Prof Scott-Mumby,
    I would like to join you in your quest as set out in “Plausible Distractions”.
    Kind regards,
    Hilda J Landman.

    Dr Hilda J Landman
    MB ChB (UCT), BA Hons (Psychology) (Stell)
    Integrative Medical Practitioner
    Specialist Primary Care Sleep Physician

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