If you are an Entrepreneur, you will know this story all too well. Water is a creative medium and there are Eureka moments all over the shop. Cleaning your teeth. Showering. Bathing. Swimming. Basically anything which I allow to take me away from my laptop to doing something else in a trance, especially involving water. I can’t tell you how often this happens. If you love to be creative as I do, then it’s a boon. Another brilliant idea from the bathroom.
Or is it? Sometimes it gets to the place where I’m frightened to take a shower.
Frankly, I think it’s a double-edged sword and almost all of my clients “suffer” from it. Ideas. Loads and loads of creative ideas.
I can think of many lovely clients who I have coached through this in the past and while we were working together we wrestled this bear on a weekly basis. “I had another brilliant idea!” ” Oh no!” My heart would sink.” It’s just a way to put off being successful when we were just beginning to make inroads in your current idea. Stop it immediately!”
What I love about this is that these clients will not give in, WILL NOT surrender to my often quite assertive pushing and shoving to get them to pick just one idea and focus on it to the exclusion of all else, especially if they are only a one-(wo)man band. There’s only so much one person working alone can achieve, and if you split that across multiple projects, then yes, your little creative brain is excited and engaged but your business results are – well, dismal.
But the best bit is when I see them asked later – often years later, long after we have ceased working together, I see people ask them for the secret of their success and they say “Focus. I gave up everything else just to meet my targets on this one project.”
Yay! It does sink in in the end. Life has a way of just bopping you on the nose until you get it. Gotta love that Life chap. He knows.
So when I have another brilliant idea from the bathroom these days, my heart at first sings and then it sinks. OMG. All that work. All that marketing. All that convincing the world that my idea is as brilliant as I think it is.
How do I know that this one, this is THE one? Well a good sign is that I want to work on it every day and that I am keen to put aside everything else and make it a major focus or preferably the major focus of my working day indefinitely until launch, and then that I would be proud to tell the world about it and harness people to it with me until we hit critical mass. I am incubating one of these right now, of course I am.
There was a chap round here just now and in 90 minutes we whipped through the five ideas he’s working on, followed by two of his wife’s and then three of mine. Phew! What an exhausting meeting! What makes this guy so different from the majority? He thrives on lots of new ideas, lots of juggling, lots of projects. He has drive despite being in his Sixties. He is prepared to do whatever it takes. His kids are grown up. His wife is forgiving, so much so she came with him to the meeting. He knows how to be successful because he’s done it before so he can replicate it again. He’s well networked. And he’s tireless, positive and endlessly upbeat.
Does that sound like you? If so then you have my permission to work on multiple ideas simultaneously. But if you are more human and you want a life with your partner and/or kids, then I beseech you to slow down, pick just one project on which you are prepared to focus to bring it to fruition, to the place where it supports your monthly outgoings. Grow it from there. And have a life all the while.
What shall we do with all those brilliant ideas from the bathroom? File ’em. In a beautiful notebook. They won’t go to waste. Well, I won’t lie. A lot of them will. But the good ones will eventually rise to the surface when it’s their time. You can do those anytime just as long as its later. And the release of these ideas from your brain into the gorgeous book will encourage more to come and that’s OK too. Allow the creative process. Bring forth more ideas, stretch that muscle especially if you head up a creative team. Or better still if those ideas enhance your current project.
But if its just you, let’s breast the finishing tape using just the one business idea at the front of your queue right now, OK?
BLIMEY! What are you lot LIKE? Put it down I said, PUT IT DOWN and step away from the new idea.
Cue mad laughter from The Business Mentor, shaking her head knowingly and lovingly.