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POV Exploration Prompts

Sixty writing prompts.

For each prompt (1 per day max), set a timer for 20 minutes, aim to write 200 words (this is a target, not a ceiling or floor). Then publish what you've finished to social media, an email list, etc.

@TODO: definitions of terms that may not be self-explanatory:

  • Buy-in
  • Implementation
  • Dissonance

The List Of Prompts

  1. List every possible argument against your POV. Anything is fair game, even if the evidence for an argument-against is weak, or purely emotional in nature. (Ideally, create a bullet list of these arguments-against, and describe each one with a phrase or 1 to 2 short sentences. You will more fully explore this list in later writing prompts, so there's no need to fully explore each argument-against today.)
  2. What is the strongest argument against your POV?
  3. That "strongest argument against your POV"... Why is it the strongest one?
  4. If you wanted some to buy into your POV despite good arguments aginst it, how would you invite their buy-in? You can list a bunch of "brainstorming" ideas or develop what you think is the single best idea for inviting their buy-in.
  5. What is the strongest argument for your POV?
  6. That "strongest argument for your POV"... why is it the strongest one?
  7. (Some people are ready to buy into your POV now. Others, despite the strength of your argument, need some things to happen first.) What makes people "not ready yet" to buy into your POV?
  8. (Some people are ready to buy into your POV now. Others, despite the strength of your argument, need some things to happen first.) What things need to happen before someone is ready to buy into your POV? (These could be events, stages of maturity, failures of other approaches, or the like.)
  9. Does remaining bought in to your POV happen naturally, or is it like maintaining adherence to a difficult diet? If it's like the latter, what could cause someone to "fall off the wagon" with respect to your POV?
  10. How much change is required for the average member of your audience to buy into your POV? How would you measure this change in terms of magnitude, intensity, or other way of measuring?
  11. Are those who buy into your POV inclined to "sell" it to others? Why or why not?
  12. In nakedly scientific or economic terms, what do people or organizations get when they buy into your POV? Status? Profit of some kind? Power? Something else?
  13. Think of the words you use to communicate your POV. What one word is the most likely to get potential adoptees "hung up"? Or confused about your meaning? Or hesitant for some other reason?
  14. Is your POV part of a lineage or "family tree" of ideas? (It almost certainly is.) What are its relatives?
  15. Again, is your POV part of a lineage or "family tree" of ideas? Are there new or long-running "family feuds" between your POV and its close or distant relatives?
  16. Again, is your POV part of a lineage or "family tree" of ideas? At the yearly family reunion, which "POV family members" does it enjoy connecting with? Which ones does it try to sit close to at the dinner table? Why?
  17. After a person or organization buys into your POV, they will start taking different (changed) action. Where will this change first show up for them?
  18. Post buy-in, post changed action, adoptees of your POV may reach a moment of heightened difficulty. Their new actions may be criticized or create new downstream problems. Write about this moment of heightened difficulty, and do so from your POV adoptee's perspective if you can.
  19. Think back to your nakedly scientific or economic description of what people/orgs get from buying in to your POV. Is what they gain evergreen, or time-bound? If the latter, when will they see a plateau? What does the plateau look like? If the former, what makes your POV "the gift that keeps on giving"?
  20. Does buying in to your POV create cognitive or other forms of dissonance?
  21. Does implementing your POV create dissonance?
  22. There are things that at first seem unrelated to your POV, but will be effected when people adopt your POV. Think of these like parts of a lake touched by the ripples that emanate from a stone dropped into the lake. What are these things?
  23. Your POV is probably not a great fit for everybody. Who should not buy into your POV? Why?
  24. If someone became excited by your POV, bought into it, and began implementing it on their own, where might they screw up the implementation?
  25. Think back over the last week of your life. There is at least one thing that's happened to you -- or that you've done -- that serves as as a good example or metaphor you could use while discussing your POV. What's the story that comes out of this event from the last week?