Why does much of the world seem to stop and quit working on an idea after one failure, when most inventors will seem to live in failure to find one success?
This is a question I ask many days when I walk out and watch the world. There is a convention of sorts that says, “this is normal” and everyone must conform to this. The reality is that in actuality, if you dissected everyone, you would find we all are a bit abnormal; yet somehow figure out a way to blend into the societal norm.
Failure to do so, will get you either outcast, branded as nuts, or if you have enough money, an eccentric.
The idea seemed good to discuss the idea of invention and the path that happened a few days ago. Today, after just one day of “normal” life that I promise my spouse each week, it is like I have to put starter fluid in my mind and light a match to get going. I doubt a cup of coffee would do much at this point.
There are a few simple keys to remember about inventing. The first is don’t be afraid to fail. Consistently apply time to your problems. Always continue to learn about new skills and things to speed up your development process. Set aside some time each day to learn to work in open brain thinking instead of always having to live in the normal world where closed brain thinking seems to prevail. Learn to be ok being alone with yourself and having to sometimes swim against the tide. And know somewhere on the planet, the odds are fairly high someone has, or is working on a solution to any problem that is very similar to yours. The last part is when you do get some success, learn to smile and be gracious to the same people that became bandwagon fans overnight and now want to work with you
So I will take the aforementioned ideas into a few simple blubs. Idea realization. Concept development, brainstorming, & common sense training ideas for your mind and body that will help make creativity more consistent.
This morning we will talk about concurrent development. What is it? It is that somewhere on the planet, someone else is working on a similar solution as you are. With 7 billion people, and an increasing population, that will grow even more.
I am not talking about the follow the trend linear progression that you see each day with products, services and features that businesses rely on with a path of planned obsolescence so that you buy new and more in the future, but really new ideas that might not have a chance to ever become reality in our lifetimes. Just remember, somewhere on the planet, someone else is probably doing what you are doing.
Why is this important? I guess it is to teach you not to let your prided and ego get in the way of realizing that while you might really have a great idea, it is more important to remember that you are the person that has that ability to generate and grow ideas. That is actually the talent.
I can sense some readers thinking, “but an idea can be worth a billion dollars!” Of which I will agree. To the few lucky inventors, it is. But if you peel back the amount of ideas, thoughts, concepts and things that didn’t work to get to that one idea, you probably would be more apt to say, “an idea is a dime a dozen.”
It is the catch 22 or the chicken and egg question of invention
Here is the reality of what can happen. Will you get ripped off in your life with an idea? Most likely. Will you present your ideas and have someone, right to your face claim it was their idea? Most likely. Will you have people say how brilliant you and the idea are, yet, they won’t back it? All the time. Will you have to look in the mirror at yourself when you realize something just doesn’t work, or there is a better path? All the time. Will you have to endure a constant stream of people that don’t grasp that you can sit in a coffee shop staring out at a wall typing furiously or scribbling into a notebook and have that actually be a job? All the time. Do you need the selective stubbornness of a mule and/or its stupidity to continue going forward when all looks hopeless? Yes.
About the only thing an inventor really needs to loose is their ego and pride. It will speed up the creation process.
The front end of invention and idea generation is really better in small teams, yet, before that, someone has to come up with the solution or the problem to address and spend time on. This is where invention gets tricky with time management.
In brainstorming, ideally you never set a time limit upon the sessions. You are dooming yourself to failure. What you do is set a start time each day and over time you will learn how much you can give in a reasonable space before your mind melts. Remember, that you will have days where you go on a several hour tear and wished time would stop so you could enjoy that moment forever. You will also have days, much like today where you stopped and have to start over from what was a good idea a few days ago, to having me typing and think, “why did I think writing about this topic would be good for people to read about?”
The answer is I no longer remember. Such is how the elements of normal life can suck your mind dry with things that we make important, that really aren't very, in the grand scheme of life.
For example. I still am not fluent in German. It will take some time. So much of my time with my family is spent staring blankly while they talk about the small talk of life. So I am learning how to use that time to think without a sketchbook. It is really difficult, as you learn just how much and fast the mind can throw around ideas. The reason I recommend a sketchbook for everyone is that while you have some cool things today for going directly to digital, there is that tactile element of the paper and pen that seems to etch the thought firmly into the mind.
Another thing is that when you have the idea down on paper. You don’t need to remember it anymore. Don’t waste your mind and memory with filling it up with things that you don’t need to keep in the brain. I am amazed with technology how little you need to remember anything anymore. All you need to do is access that data. In a sense that is why this blog is a long ramble of 1st drafts about seeming nothing. It isn’t designed to be a road map in an orderly construct that only needs a skim over to say “oh isn’t’ that interesting” If you want to learn something, it is more like panning for gold. They are there; you just have to read a bit to find them.
The same is the reality of ideas. They are all out there, but who is the one that will take the time to put shovels of dirt into the pans and sift them around to locate the little nuggets of gold that exist?
The reality of invention is that if you keep panning, all the little nuggets you find will end up with you locating the really big ideas that will occupy your time and life working to make the ideas for the solutions reality.
Now I get to take another German class, which in many ways is like inventing. You just keep coming back again and again, hopeful that one day a light bulb in you heard will go off and you “get it.” While not the way I intended to start this week. It is a start…a step, a sucky, muddy, convoluted one. But that isn’t bad; it can only mean tomorrow will be better.
Thankfully, when it comes to generating ideas and solutions, I always “got it.”