To Pursue or not Your Creative Idea

Wednesday, 11 April 2012   |   Creative Thinking

MemoryYou are a creative person.  As a creative person, you have ideas.  Some of them are no doubt quite grand.  The question is,  should you pursue them or not?  Working out if your idea is truly awesome, with world changing possibilities, or just a silly idea that'll never take off is one of the hardest things to predict.  Here's some food for thought.

The Google Guys (Sergey Brin and Larry Page) originally tried to sell their idea for a search engine to the other big players at the time.  All they wanted was a measely $1 million.  Nobody was interested.  In fact the tales are that most organisations though these guys were a joke.  Most of those people are now out of business and Google is by far the largest search engine around.

J. K. Rowling was rejected by 12 publishers before getting the nod by a small publishing house in London.  Even then they initially advised her to get a day job as they didn't expect to return much profit on the book. 

Jack Canfield is a very successful motivational speaker.  He has a hit book 'Chicken Soup for the Soul' that has sold millions worldwide.  He was rejected by 123 publishers before finally getting a break.

Just becasuse others don't have faith in your idea, doesn't mean it's a silly idea.

On the Flip Side

I see a lot of people pitch what they think are absolutely world changing ideas but they are ideas that just really aren't quite there.  I suppose the problem is that you tend to see your ideas through rose coloured glasses.  It's not the nicest but when you've got a sinking ship it's best to jump.

So how do you know?

If you could answer this question, you would be a very wealthy person.  Sometimes you also get tripped up as the idea may be truly great but the execution leaves a bit to be desired. 

There are many things you should consider when considering if a creative idea has wings or not but I like to also take a look at the person. 

If you are over the top excited or making grand claims about how your idea will revolutionise the world then I get sceptical.  If you're more interested in how much money you're going to make than the actual idea itself then I get worried.

If your idea is for something that you use yourself, and have been using it yourself for quite a while, then I get more interested.  Especially if it has survived the Effor Equation and overcome the initial Excitement period.

If you can explain your idea to me succinctly in one sentence then I also have more faith in it.  This shows me that not only is it a clear concept but also that you really understand deeply what it is you are proposing.  When people can only offer vague and fluffy descriptions of their idea it is often a sign that is has many holes in it, which is not a good sign.

I want to know how you handle skepticism from others.  If you easily falter under scrutiny then I believe you don't have faith yourself in your idea,  or your ability.  Similar if you become rather defensive. 

Have you failed before?  If you have failed several times before then I believe you are in a much better place to succeed.  You have hopefully learnt a lot about why things don't work and you are confident your current creative idea does not have those characteristics.  Alternatively,  this may be one of your failures on your way to success.

At the end of the day,  you need to have absolute faith in your idea but you also need to keep evaluating it and when it's showing signs of faltering you need to be able to let it go and start seeking the next truly creative idea.  Consider others opinions but always value your own over them.  Even the experts often get it wrong.


You're on your way to becoming a Highly Creative Person.


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