Posts Tagged ‘the power of ideas’


There was a time in my career when I freelanced for a licensee of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. It was one of those Charles Dickens/Tale of Two Cities/Best of Times/Worst of Times scenarios. The business end of working with this particular licensee was at times extremely difficult, but I was working on the hottest property in the world at that time, and even now decades later, when I tell people I did that, they will usually say, “Wow, that’s really cool!” But I’m not namedropping here. There is a point to this.

I was thrilled with the Turtles, from the time I first heard of them. “Why?” Because the idea was so delightfully weird. Two buddies, who were comic fans, started drawing this goofy idea that was sort of a parody of everything in the genre. It could have faded before it ever made it to the public, but instead, they kept at it. They took their weird idea and they ran with it and as a result, reaped benefits that had to have exceeded their wildest dreams. That’s the answer, you know.

Ideas are incredibly valuable, and not just the good ones, or the safe ones, or the popular ones.

Ideas can reap benefits that are huge, but only if they connect with people. I don’t know how many times I have looked at a product and said, “I had that idea 20 years ago.” and I’ve known many other creatives with the same lamentation. But do you know the difference between my idea and the person who cashed in. I had an idea and I kept it to myself. They took their idea and shared it with the world. More than that, they took the idea and did the work to make it reality. Yes I could have beaten quite a few people to the punch, but I had a dream, they did the work. The ones who win are always the ones that have the courage to claim their idea before the world and do the work. My goal is to never lament another idea that found completion at the hands of someone else.

Your ideas are valuable and there has never been an easier time to get your ideas before people to find an audience. You just have to do it. Think about the Ninja Turtles one more time. A lot of people, I’m sure, thought it was a stupid idea, it might even be a stupid idea, but I’m also relatively sure that Eastman and Laird, couldn’t care a lick about the people who think it’s stupid. Why? Because they put their work out there and found legions of fans who thought it was the best thing ever.

Don’t create idea that you think everyone will like. Things that everyone likes are usually painfully boring. Instead look for the unusual, the remarkable, the unique, and then do the work and put it out there for the world to see.

Your ideas are valuable, but only if other people know about them.

Assignment: Look back over your life and think of as many of your ideas as you can remember. Look for one you can get behind and create a list of things you can do, right now, to make it a reality.

 

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Ideas are powerful. Literally ever great thing that has ever created started out as an idea. It might have been a small thing that grew over time, or it might have been something that just came all at once like a bold from the blue, but it started as an idea. Look at any problem you have ever faced, at least the ones that were under your control. Faced with a problem, we have essentially two choices, give up or try to find the solution. If you do the first, I have nothing to offer, but if you decide to try to find a solution, guess what you’re looking for. Yep, you need an idea,

Ideas are powerful, but they’re not always well timed. Sometimes you have an idea for something and at this point in your life, given your resources and opportunities, you may be in no position to act on it at all. What do you do with that? Some people would say, well that’s just a pipe dream, but that’s not what smart people do. Smart people realize that ideas have high value. Smart Christian people realize we serve a God for whom all things are possible. Sometimes an idea really is ahead of it’s time. The prophet Isaiah prophesied the coming of the Messiah 700 years before he came. Now I know that was a little different than your ideas, but it works perfectly about what I am going to say about your “ahead of it’s time idea.” Isaiah wrote that idea down, and one day it was fulfilled. And again, I am not saying your idea is on par with the Messiah, because it isn’t, but it’s worth recording. It’s worth getting down on paper.

Then there are times when your idea might seem weird. Is it really, or is it just ahead of it’s time? Remember when the devices they had on Star Trek in the 60s. How many of them seem pretty much like devices that are now reality? Record your ideas. They are powerful.

Who knows maybe your conditions might change in the next year, or two, or ten. Maybe technology will catch up to your idea. Who could have foreseen some of the devices we have now a decade or two go? But can I tell you, someone did. That someone might as well be you.

Record your powerful ideas. It costs nothing but a little time and once you have them, you can refer back them any time you’re stuck for an idea.

There’s a somewhat apocryphal story about Walt Disney. He had envisioned Disney World back then the area where it is build was little more than a swamp. He worked and dreamed, but unfortunately, he passed away before it was completed. At the grand opening, a Disney executive had the privilege of sitting next to Mr. Disney’s widow. It is said at some point in the event, the executive turned to Mrs. Disney and said, “Oh if only Walt could have seen this.” Without missing a beat, Mrs, Disney said, “He did see it, that’s why it’s here.”

Your ideas are powerful. Record them, and look for the ones you can begin to bring to reality. Then pray and do the work. Every great thing that has ever been created started as an idea. Maybe it’s time to bring your idea to reality.

Assignment: Set something up to record your ideas, whether it be a notebook, a sketchbook, computer file, or whatever else. Revisit your idea file often.