One thing I am never short of is ideas. In fact I usually have so many ideas going, I have to stop myself before I have “hundreds” of little things going, yet none are successful because I never reach completion with anything.
Yet even with all of those ideas rolling around, it can be difficult to make a decision on which way to go – what to pursue. Which is why I’ve devised this plan to help me stay on the right path.
1. Create a list
With ideas popping up all the time, its easy to forget things along the way. When I have an idea, it goes into my “idea folder”. Which is simply a file on my computer that I regularly contribute to, and open up to read over it again and again throughout my week.
2. Mull it over
Every idea is an opportunity. But that doesn’t mean every idea is right for you. Some things work for you; some things don’t. Rather than jumping on an idea, I like to let it set for awhile, and see if I still feel the same way down the road. At the beginning of the year, we wrote down all we hoped to accomplish during the coming year. Any idea has to fit within those guidelines. So I write down my ideas and process it to see if it fits with our direction. Some ideas change. Others simply stay in my folder. Still others remain there for years – you would be amazed at how many projects I’ve pulled out and “dusted” off after several years, quickly turning them into new projects.
3. Travel with it
While you are mulling your new idea over, its important to get out of your norm and experience something new. Whether its a walk in a park, or a two week journey to another country, just breaking out of your comfort zone helps put your new idea in perspective. And in many cases it brings on a life of its own. You can suddenly see how everything works together; and whether your idea is perfect for you today or is something you should put aside for awhile.
4. Map it out
Once you feel you have an idea worth generating, map out the process. How will it fit into your current business? How will you create it? How will you grow it into a business? How will it benefit you? The more you can answer about it up front, the more success you’ll find with it. Of course nothing will guarantee success. But it is easier if you’ve thought and planned everything through from the beginning.
5. Put it into action
I’ve started a ton of projects that I’ve hoped to put into action in days. And weeks later I finally complete it. That’s okay. The important thing is to work on it every day. If a project is important enough to do, its important enough to finish. Make it your goal to do at least one thing every day to see it through from beginning to end.