Are you one of those people who has a head constantly swimming with ideas? Or maybe someone that gets amazing flashes of inspiration from time to time. It feels like the time of year for ideas. If there is such a thing. The time of year when everything is warming up and coming out. There’s that feeling of newness. The feeling of promise. It’s when people start moving along from being wrapped up into slowly exposing their toes and shoulders to the world again.
Of course ideas aren’t seasonal. They don’t come out with the sun, although there is something to be said for that warm relaxed mood that perhaps leads to inner reflection. Ideas are just as likely to come out when you are swimming, or running or cleaning your teeth. The generation of ideas is very personal and everyone is inspired by different things.
The seeds on my windowsill do kind of remind me of ideas. At the moment they are small promising shoots of something as yet undefinable. If I treat them well, they will actually be peppers (I think!). They are little gems, poking their way out into the world, hoping to get what they need to become something big and beautiful. If given the right environment, if nurtured in the right way, your ideas, just like my seedlings will grow and grow into something amazing.
So, let’s say you have an idea. Now what do you do? How can you get that ember of a thought to set light to the world? You need to do all you can to ensure that your small vulnerable nugget of wisdom will turn into something incredible, and not just wither and die.
Well, the first step would be to add clarity. What on earth is your idea? Try to work out how you would explain it to someone else. Perhaps find some key words to play with. Turn them around. Explain and define your idea so that you know exactly what you mean. So you want to open an exclusive bike shop in Bristol? But what do you actually mean? There are lots of bike shops in Bristol, what makes this idea so important?
Once you have a pretty good explanation of what your idea is, and perhaps you have tried it out on a few people to see if they get it, look at the positive elements of that idea. What are its strengths. What are the amazing and sensational properties of your genius of a plan that is going to lead you to riches and satisfaction?
Of course even the most incredible plans and ideas will not be without their flaws. Despite your positive outlook and forward thinking approach you will also need to consider the pitfalls. What are the weaknesses? Is your idea unique enough to achieve what you need and will it fill that gap in the market?
Back on the up again you will also need to work out what is out there to make your idea fly like a beautiful colourful kite in the air. You’re still developing it, so it’s not ready for take off yet. Hold on to your idea but imagine the opportunities available to you to nurture your idea so that it can get going.
And not to dampen your spirits, but there may also be things that could impact on your idea to make it flounder. Things that are out of your control. Things that may get in the way of the trajectory of your unique and special idea and scupper it. What are the threats? Fore warned is forearmed as they say.
And once you have thought through some of these things, you will have captured your idea making it more defined and more thought through. If you are still serious about your idea and want to take it forward then you will need some kind of plan. You will want to know and understand what you need to develop and take your idea forward. You will need to find out what resources you require and what is important to protect it and ensure it doesn’t die. You will need to keep it going and nurture it so that your carefully thought out ideas become fruitful.
So if you are harbouring some creative ideas that need to be coaxed and cared for and cajoled and cultivated then it might just be a question of getting the next steps right. With proper care and attention your ideas can flourish and be translated into something magical. Just like my pepper plants that will one day end up appearing in a tasty dish.
And if you are looking for some tools and processes to help you to think and develop your ideas, and to formulate a plan then give me a shout. Get in touch, and bring some friends who also have great ideas. There’s nothing better than a group of people working together to bring energy and life to those ideas and to create some brilliant plans for putting thoughts into action.