This is one of my favorite small pieces of advice in general. It’s quite relevant in an industry like tabletop gaming where we have a lot of entries or feedback and frequently have to rate things to easily evaluate and compare them.
I learned about it from Tim Ferris’s book, Tribe of Mentors, where he relates a lot of knowledge he absorbed from successful people. Here is an excerpt from an interview where he answered with a blurb about this interesting topic:
Did any responses particularly surprise you?
“A lot of the answers surprised me in how simply powerful they were. For instance, one thing that came up twice, from an athlete and a CEO, was ranking opportunities from one to ten but not using seven. For example, if you go to a restaurant and you ask the waiter or waitress how good the steak is from one to 10, seven is a cop-out number that a lot of people use to answer, because it’s non-committal. As soon as you remove seven, it can either be a six, which is barely a passing grade, or it’s an eight, which is very excited. It really helps when you’re assessing an opportunity if you rank things from one to ten but you’re not allowed to use a seven - it makes decisions a lot faster and a lot easier. That’s something I’ve been using every day.”
Applying this same mentality not just to evaluation of opportunities, but also to gauge how much I actually like an experience or a decision I made has revealed to me just how often I was letting things be “pretty good” or “okay” in my own life. Now, I’m striving to live a life where I can honestly be excited about everything I choose to spend time on.
It’s also a lot easier to store a board game collection that only has your 8’s, 9’s, and 10’s.