If you ever wondered how other seem to have an endless flow of ideas… then you’re not alone. I did too. Then I figured out this trick and I’ve been doing it ever since.
A few months back, I felt like I was “missing” something.
I had a lot of ideas whirling around, but none of them seemed “right.”
Instead of feeling creative and productive, I felt like before me on a table was a giant puzzle. The pieces were all sort of there, but the puzzle wasn’t done. You could see the colors of the picture, but not the actual image. There was promise of a beautiful scene if I could get it in order.
This was highly frustrating to me because I’m a Do It kind of person. Got an idea? Great, do it! Think of a new post to write? Awesome, write it! Well, when the ideas are like loose puzzle pieces… they aren’t structured enough to work with. And this can be hard.
Then I started reading two books. One that is very popular now and one that was wildly popular in days gone by. In fact, the new book recommended the older one. As I began reading these books and digesting the information, I began to feel excited. Encouraged. Possibility rising to the surface. Confidence that I – Rachel Norman – could have a good idea.
Yes. Oh yes, I could.
Then I started doing exactly what I’ll talk about in this post, based on reading the books above. Think and Grow Rich and the Miracle Morning are the two I recommend reading first. I started doing these things regularly and – lo and behold – I started having good ideas.
Interesting ideas I’d never heard of before.
And the best part? These weren’t just for work but for life and family as well. Let’s get on with it.
How to think up a good idea
This is so absurdly simple that I am nearly embarrassed to write a blog post about it, but there you go. I’m a simple gal.
Step One – Decide You Need an Idea
So this is key. We rarely get ideas or even thoughts about things that aren’t on our radar. If we need to raise our income, first we have to desire a higher income. If we need an idea to solve a behavior problem with one of our kids, we need to orient ourselves towards that solution. We may not know what idea we want, but we need to know we need an idea. Basically, we need to earnestly desire a solution for our problem.
Step Two – Tell Your Brain to Think of an Idea
At this step I felt like a bad Christian girl for a bit. Shouldn’t I pray for an idea instead of thinking? Isn’t thinking my brain could have some good ideas prideful or self-seeking? Then I realized the Bible talks about our thoughts and thinking a lot. Like… a whole lot. But that’s a whole other post.
And there’s basically an entire book written about wisdom and knowledge (Proverbs) so then I understood in my heart that it was okay to use my head for good. It is okay to make my brain work closer towards its potential to help me achieve good and worthy ends. It’s okay to both pray for and think about solutions. Human brains are powerful things and it’s okay to start using it for more than mindless pursuits.
So when I was showering or walking or driving or it crossed my mind, I would tell myself… “I need an idea.”
When I would hear about certain businesses or pursuits or interesting ways of doing things I’d tell myself, “Wow, that is a good idea. Now I need a good idea.”
Step Three – Repeat Step Two Until You Have an Idea
Ideas did not immediately come. I have found that not much comes immediately in this world very often except trouble and inconvenience. So with that in mind, I kept telling my brain to give me a good idea. For business. For home. For our home build. For my kids. For our family.
And then, thing of all things, I really started having ideas. I started being more creative than ever before. I began to have a more optimistic outlook toward both life and business.
Step Four – Keep Thinking Until it Becomes Clear
These ideas often came in a cloudy form, not really clear yet but on the right track. Some of these ideas that came to me included things like:
- alternative ways to provide the type of schooling we want for the kids
- a family business idea my husband and I want to do together
- a way to more deliver value on my own blog (A Mother Far from Home) without having to sell things over and over
Once you have the fuzzy beginnings of an idea, just keep thinking and thinking until it becomes more clear. If you focus on finding a solution and gnaw on the ideas that come your way, you will get closer and closer to the winner.
Step Five – Put It Into Action
This is a big one. If you’ve had a good idea and you know it’ll work then you gotta do it. Just do it. If you can’t do it all, do a small part of it. Take action. Even if you split up one big idea into 500 actions and only do 1 a day. Do something. This is how you grow self-motivation, self-discipline, and how you begin to hone your instincts.
“Truly successful decision-making relies on a balance between deliberate and instinctive thinking.” Malcolm Gladwell
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