Holding On to An Idea

We all forget things often and risk losing good ideas. As soon as a brilliant idea comes to you, there are two things you can do to preserve it. First, you can record it – in writing, picture, drawing or video – and put it in a place where you will never lose it. The alternative, I’m afraid, is to let the idea linger in mental space and see if it can stand the test of time. The best ideas are not easily forgotten and won’t leave you alone. If you truly want to test the relative strength your idea, see whether you forget it after a while. If you fail to write it down and never forget it, chances are pretty good that your idea counts for something and isn’t going to run away from you.

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Bad Ideas Are Good

Writer’s block is a very difficult dragon to slay. Bad ideas are better than nothing – at least you are coming up with ideas at all. A pile of bad ideas can still be useful. Never kill a bad idea prematurely. Let it run its course, in tandem with other bad ideas. Bad ideas can overlap and form alliances. Enough bad ideas can inspire a good one. Keep your mind open. Let the ideas flow. Analyze and annotate without surgery or criticism. Brainstorm until you can brainstorm no more. Then dig the gem out from underneath the rubble.

The Idea Storm

We are our own worst enemies when it comes to inventing ideas. More than anyone else, we criticize and censor our own thoughts. We wave opportunities away at the first sight of obstacles – and never look back. Unacceptable. All great things come with challenges. We cannot rule out possibilities before staring them in the face long enough to determine their credibility.

Practice brainstorming. Sit down for a dedicated period of time. Challenge yourself to come up with a specific number of ideas, preferably addressing a problem you want to solve. Set a timer and feel the pressure. Write every idea down. Do not judge them. Do not cross them out. Never read the list until the brainstorming session concludes. Free your mind from the type of critical thought that restricts creativity. Dream big and ignore consequences. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. You will surprise yourself by your own creativity.