The Problem with Big Ideas and the Inability to Execute
Lately I’ve been focused on identifying my major flaws and working on ways to deal with them or eliminate them. Recently I’ve been stuck on the difficulty I have when going from idea to implementation. I always get these great ideas and I get extremely excited and have this sudden urge to stop everything else in my life and focus all of my energy on bringing this idea to life. Unfortunately, once I conduct some research and start planning I eventually reach a point where I feel like the idea is too big for me to accomplish. The problem is with most big ideas there is a huge question mark when trying to figure out what first steps to take, or what needs to be done in order to bring the idea to life. I have come to the realization that my failure to figure out the answer to the huge question of “HOW?” lies in being afraid to fail and being uncomfortable with unknown processes.
“Our worst misfortunes never happen, and most miseries lie in anticipation.” — Honore de Balzac
If I get a new idea, I have to accept the fact that I won’t always know the HOW: HOW exactly to solve the problem or HOW to get the task done or HOW to deliver the product, etc. I have to be OK with not knowing. Not knowing means I will make mistakes. I have to be OK with that too. That means I have to be open to failure. I have to be comfortable with being uncomfortable. I have to accept the uncertainty that comes with doing something new, or something bigger than anything I’ve done before.
Another problem I have is thinking that I have to do everything on my own. My ideas have been getting larger and larger in scale and I’ve learned that nothing great is done alone. There’s no such thing as self-made. It’s all about surrounding yourself with people who are skilled in the areas where you are weak. Find people who are better and smarter than you in multiple areas and get their help while you work together and learn from them. The big ideas always require a team.
Since ideas are so common, it’s not hard to find one or two extremely similar to yours so if you share your idea and hear, “That’s been done before!” don’t let that discourage you. You might be able to execute differently with a strategy that lets your idea stand out in a unique way.
When you have an idea you just have to start it. Somehow, some way, the idea must begin to take shape. The worst thing we can do when we have a big idea is to let it stay an idea. If we don’t put our great ideas into action, we could be doing ourselves and others a huge disservice. Big ideas are a dime a dozen. Everyone has one. The only difference between them is that some are put into action and executed while others are tucked away neatly in a locked brain. Don’t keep your ideas locked away. Go ahead and execute. You never know what you might be able to create unless you get started.
Originally published at kevinclaiborne.com.