Poetry Monster

Inspiration Overwhelm Can Keep You Stuck!

Some days there are simply too many shining examples of people triumphing over crushing circumstances. The media parades before us teachers like Eckhart Tolle or Joe Vitalle who rose to riches from being homeless or Aron Ralston who sacrificed his arm to save his life. That awe-inspiring, brilliant glare of achievement produces an equal amount of dark shadow where a normal life seems to lie hidden in the shadows of in consequence. Our daily struggles seem like ant hills next to the mighty Himalayas scaled by those gods of achievement.

Many people faced similar situations and survived but did not triumph. They are never noted in the news except with certain indifference. You can find them, if you find them at all, in a footnote to a news story along these lines: Six other hikers were reported lost this same week, but were eventually found safely.

Others exist still, in terrible circumstances, mired in the drama and pain, resigned to their despair. Often we pity and placate them with charitable donations to ease our conscience. Or worse, we harangue them from our position of knowing what is best for them that they cannot or will not do for themselves.

Let us admit that it is struggle, not the eventual outcome, which we find inspiring and engrossing. The heroics of impossible odds captivate our attention (think Frodo at the Gates of Mordor). The happy-ever-after ending creates a heartfelt sigh of appreciation, and then we almost immediately lose interest in where Life leads our hero next. We know people living happy ever after results who are simply annoying: tedious advice givers; boring philanthropists; and those who explain ad nauseum that they walked barefoot through the snow uphill both directions to get their results.

We, who face more modest problems, while living normal lives, are left struggling to break free of our own daily mediocrity. How can these teachers really apply to our lives? If the edges of our path are simply bumpy gravel instead of a thousand foot cliff edge, a wrong turn does not need to be corrected instantly. If the river of our life turns in ox-bow curves through a vast monotony of prairie grass how are we to find the will to break free and paddle to new perspectives?

Without emotional fuel of the ‘Do it now or die!’ variety, we simply face the grinding choice of ‘Do something Different or… Die Slowly by Inches’. Most of us choose the slow torture of enduring one more day…. while decades pass. We look at the glittering examples touted in our media and decide they do not apply in our lives.

Consider that making changes in your life can actually be more difficult. Facing extreme situations we surrender our old ways and make new choices because there are no other options left. In normal lives change seems a luxury — and an effort. Yet, the small changes, made by the people just like you and me create massive results. Never underestimate the impact of everyday heroes making tiny changes.

Do not be overwhelmed by the glittering gurus. And when looking for inspiration – check first in your own mirror!

Source by Beth Lane

Poetry Monster

Signs of a Legitimate Product Seller

A lot of companies are now specializing in the sale and distribution of specially formulated homeopathic supplements in easily digestible forms. To determine if it is a legitimate product seller, here are some of the telltale signs of a company’s stamp of approval.

1) Abundance of literature

With every purchase, there is a great amount of literature that is provided with the product. Even when just browsing, there is also a fair amount of literature given to help in the decision-making process. The packaging would also provide an indication of the genuiness of the product and seller. If their product is sold repackaged then this is a red flag as to the safety and reliability of the product being purchased. Not only is the product literature included, but also complementary products carried by the seller. If there is none provided, then be on guard as to the genuineness of the product.

2) Networking

Some company operates through a networking marketing system. They seek out jobseekers to be employed as their agents and the agents earn on the basis of sales commissions. The networking model is used as the initial basis to generate sales. If there is any other means that the product is sold, then there may be issues as to the products being sold.

3) Guarantees and warranties

The products are covered by guarantees as to the health and safety of the products being sold. Also, there are money back warranties as to product effectivity. A legitimate seller would provide certificates of guarantee for the products sold to consumers. In the absence of these, then be wary of the seller.

Source by Jeff C Hoffman

Poetry Monster

Creative Inspiration – How Are You Leaving Your Unique Creative Fingerprints On The World?

Most of us who are creative have two major motivations to create.

The first is to discover more about ourselves, figure out who we are, what’s important to us and where we’re heading.

Our creative art in whatever form it takes allows us to experiment, explore and step by step become more ourselves.

The second major motivation to create is to connect with others.

To somehow touch, enrich and add a little colour to the lives of other people, whether they’re people around us, or until now complete strangers.

So think for a moment how this happens in your creative life.

What creative fingerprints are you leaving on the lives of others?

How does your creativity enhance and inspire other people to create more, to understand themselves better, and ultimately be more happy and at peace with themselves?

You might well be thinking: “But how can I do that, I’m not a best selling author or a renowned painter with works in galleries around the world? How can someone like me do any good with what I create?”

What you may be overlooking is that your art, the “creative product” that results at the end of a new project is only a small part of the story.

There are many ways to get your art in front of the eyes of an appreciative audience – especially since the explosion of the internet. But there are other ways, equally powerful and inspiring ways, you can leave your creative fingerprints.

As important as WHAT you create is HOW you create.

Imagine you have a day job local to where to live and walk to work every morning. You regularly pass a young man in a coffee shop, who always has a sketchbook out, scribbling away. You’ve never seen the result of his creativity, in fact it’s not relevant to the impression he leaves on you.

Just by seeing that young man publicly creating each day, being brave enough to demonstrate through his actions that creating is something important enough to him that he has no fear or embarrassment about drawing in the midst of a crowded coffee shop, can’t fail to inspire you.

Or maybe every evening you walk home past a dance studio and see a mature couple in each other’s arms, gracefully gliding through the kind of steps they’ve danced a million times before, still with the same passion and enjoyment that they had when they were young and first met.

Again, you couldn’t help but be inspired and encouraged in your own creativity.

You too can be the young guy sketching in the coffee shop, or the dancing couple. Just by stepping up and creating each day, you also can touch the lives of other creative people, lead by example and say “Creating is a core part of my life, I’m showing my commitment to that by showing up each day and simply creating.”

Think of some of the ways you can do this today. Then put them into action. You have no idea just what kind of fingerprints you could leave on the creative life of another…

Source by Dan Goodwin

Poetry Monster

Ravana and Lucifer – The Indian Connection

What is it about world literature that seems to evoke the same feelings of sublimate, history and a sense of timeless appeal? In their intricacy, plot movements and connection with the ancient scriptures, all world literature, transcends to great literature not only in their time but for time immemorial. Interestingly, it is the characters in such masterpieces which remain etched in the minds of the readers especially because they are usually a beautiful confluence of the simple, complex and even intricate. Every culture, religion and civilization has its own nuances which are often reflected in the literature of the times. Some of course reflect thoughts and emotions that stand true for generations to come and are often identified under the precarious proclamation of classics that remain a part of our history gloriously embedded into our present. All this and so much more, to say that literature around the world is often found comparable and indeed similar too in ways more than one.

Any one who is familiar with Hindu mythology and related literature will maintain that the ‘Ramayana’, the tale of Rama is unlike the Mahabharata ( another Hindu literary piece) probably less a tale of intricacies and more a piece on Hindu mythology and its various facets. Ramayana in fact documents the beliefs and traditions propagated by the Hindu sages of yore and present them in an allegorical form woven into the delicacy of the narrative. The interpretation of the philosophical and the devotional characters of Rama, Lakshman, Bharat, Sita, Hanuman not withstanding it is the character of and Ravana, who is incidentally the villain of the piece which is often a contradiction in itself. Delicately handled and oh so well executed the character of Ravana with his ten heads and roaring laugh mesmerizes as it fascinates and somewhere down the line he resonates another great character from literature too!

As in Indian Hindu literature, English literature ( as different from Indian English writings) have a bevy of such beauties steeped in Christian Mythology. Starting at the beginning with ‘Beowulf’, Milton and his ‘Paradise Lost’ are works that immediately come to the mind. The above mentioned names are of course as is easily identified mentioned in the special context again of a certain special character so very identifiable with Ravana from Hindu mythology. Yes you guessed it right we are talking about Lucifer and Ravana! I have always wondered how similar the two are.. though the twain never meet and all that.. In their presentation of course both characters largely differ. Yet one cannot but notice the inherent beauty that both possess.

While Ravana is the angry, rebellious, out to out do everyone (himself included demon with ten hands, he is the ardent Shiv Bhakt too. A man of tremendous virtues, part Brahmin- part Kshatriya, Ravana is huge simply with his potential as a character. The name Ravana (He of the Terrifying Roar) was given to him by Lord Shiva. Similarly, Lucifer who is considered (as per Christian literature and legends) as having been an archangel with powers in heaven is thrown out of heaven when he rebels against God. Milton presented Lucifer as a rebel, though a very interesting one. When Lucifer mouths, “All is not lost; the’ unconquerable Will, / and study of revenge, immortal hate, / and courage never to submit or yield… ” he is terrific in his indomitable courage as he is supreme in confidence. It is perhaps this beauty of the characters that lend a splendid visage to what has emerged as two massive and intriguing characters in world literature.

Legend has it that Ravana along with his brother, Kumbakarna were actually reincarnations of Jaya and Vijaya, who had served as gatekeepers at the abode of Vishnu. But being cursed they were born in Earth, as enemies to the lord. (which would in turn shorten their chakra of 7 rebirths)

Though Ravana is mostly the face of evil and a representation of the triumph of good over evil, he is not left with that. As is the hall mark of all great literature, the character is developed and reaches its zenith to present an intriguing tale of a person who though eveil is blessed with the best qualities a man can have! A philosopher and a pundit, Ravana was guided by of his father, to acquire the vast knowledge of the scriptures. Interestingly, Ravana has also been accredited with creating the first grammar of Sanskrit language as well as compiling and editing the Krishnayajurved! His scholarly virtues, expert as a Veena player, and stories of how he presided as the chief purohit of the Puja for Ram to start a battle which eventually killed him are the stuff of legends today.

Strangely and in a similar vein, Milton presents Lucifer with utmost sympathy, perhaps unknowingly, as stated in ‘The Marriage of Heaven and Hell’ by Blake who says that Milton was ‘of the Devil’s party without knowing it.” However Milton’s Lucifer though ruler of hell is not only intelligent and ruthless but utterly charming too! Almost as evidence of this when Lucifer at a later stage enters the Garden of Eden, he is successful in tempting Eve, to eat fruit from the forbidden tree. And of course like Ravana, he is enfant terrible, the master of all he surveys (in this case hell) and the King of the Earth with 90 legions under his command.

Much in the traces of the Shakespearian hero who lands from his mighty position with that oh one flaw! may be Lucifer and Ravana did too yet in their own magnificent ways they soar and how. It is perhaps in this uncharacteristic humaneness of the demons and the love for all things grey, as opposed to black and white that makes literature so fascinating a medium, traces of which can be found in many such parallels drawn across the world and yet to be done!

Source by Maitreyee Chowdhury

Poetry Monster

Iron Man Inspiration – Raise The Ceiling On What You Can Achieve

The Florida Iron Man involves swimming 2.4 miles, biking 112 miles and running 26.2 miles. It is one of the toughest sporting competitions in the world.

Many people, including me, have trouble swimming half a mile let alone 2.4 miles. Cycling 112 miles might involve the equivalent of cycling flat out on an exercise bike for 6 hours. I have trouble even making a start on my exercise bike!

Running 26.2 miles is not easy as many young and healthy people find out when they have to stop or stagger to the end. Jane Tomlinson recently completed the Florida Iron Man, in 15 hours and 48 minutes.

Before the race, the announcer told the crowd: “Jane Tomlinson from Leeds, England is racing. She learned 4 years ago that she had only 7 months to live because of terminal cancer. She has been doing triathlons ever since.”

Jane has a supportive husband called Mike and 3 lovely children, Suzanne, Rebecca and Steven. She has had cancer for 14 years. 4 years ago she was told she had 7 months to live. She has now lived 4 years since she was told she would die within 7 months.

Many people, who are on the receiving end of news that they have terminal cancer, just give up and wait to die or take drugs which will hasten their end. Jane, on the other hand, decided to live and coped with her illness by taking up various tough sporting challenges.

One of her daughters commented on a recent TV documentary that Jane was “never a sporty person before all this. She did gardening and walking and that’s about it. I never saw her run or do anything athletic.”

Jane wanted to leave her children a lasting memory of their mum achieving things: “I know having cancer is not a positive thing but I just wanted to find a way to live and remember that I am still alive and pleased to be here. I try to just enjoy what I’ve got in front of me.”

Many sick people give up their roles as carers and wage earners. Jane has kept her roles as a mum and a wage earner. She looks after her three children and works as a radiographer. She started training to be a radiographer 14 years ago after her mastectomy. She needs some of the money to be able to travel to the sporting events she competes in.

What amazes me about her is how she manages to live such a full life and still attend at hospitals and clinics to receive the treatment she needs to keep going.

She does this by first creating her treatment schedule as the priority and then fitting in the rest of her life around this. Her life is so full that many people can’t believe she is ill:

“Some people don’t believe that I am actually poorly but I am. Occasionally you remember that things are pretty dire.” Even walking can be painful because of the tumours in her bones.

Some criticise her being away travelling and competing instead of staying with her family. Her answer: ” If I do these events, I will be fit enough to spend time with my family.” Some of her family went with her to Florida.

Her doctor comments: “Jane is an example of what can be achieved through modern anti cancer treatment but the majority of my patients don’t run marathons.” That is an understatement.

Jane had several obstacles in her path before she actually arrived in Florida.Her hip was sore and stopped her training for the iron man. At times she was undecided as to whether to go or not :

“I don’t think I should go but that does not mean I won’t go”. Her husband Mike did not want her to go: “She could be a paraplegic by the end of the race or even die.”

In the end she decided to go and Mike supported her because:

“She can’t put it off till next year because there isn’t a next year. It’s now or never”. Jane commented: “If I don’t give myself an opportunity to try, it will always be unfinished business.”

She packed her gear with the help of her friend, Ryan, who would be her companion throughout the Iron Man. She made sure she included her pain killers

She arrived in Florida and decided to attempt to start the race even though she was not fit. No terminally ill cancer patient has attempted an iron man before. She explained one reason for racing: “One of the reasons for doing this is to challenge people’s perceptions of illness”.

Mike had never been as scared as this before. “I wish to hell she wasn’t doing this.” He didn’t tell her what he was thinking because she needed all his support in what might be her last great venture.

Mike remarked: “There aren’t many boundaries left that you can bring down in the world. She has gone from being told she is going to die to doing an iron man. I would never have believed it”

Jane seemed to enjoy the swim and got through the cycle ride. In the marathon she was still running after 9 miles. “Absolutely incredible!” exclaimed Mike. “She is obviously not comfortable and is feeling pain in all the places she has got cancer.”

Steven told his dad to calm down. He knew that his mum would be alright.Over 80 competitors had pulled out after 13 hours but Jane was still competing. Mike cried out: “She ‘s still running – bloody hell. You’re going to do it! Go for it, love. We’ll see you at the finish”

At the finish, Mike expressed his amazement again: “I never thought in a mllion years she would get to do this.” Ryan, Jane’s companion on the race, commented: “Jane just blew me away!”

Jane’s comment not surprisingly was: “This is the final thing I am doing.” By the end of the iron man race Jane had set an inspiring example for both the healthy and the sick. She and Mike had also raised 1 million pounds for cancer research.

All of us are terminal but not all of us have realised it yet. Life is too short to waste however long we may live on this planet. We all need to take swift action to do what is important to us while we still have the chance.

Jane’s life is just one of those lives that can inspire us to achieve far more than we could dream possible and to make the most of whatever life we have left. We can all compete in our own iron man race.

Source by John Watson

Poetry Monster

Thinking Volleyball by Mike Hebert – A Review

If you’re looking for a book to make you think about your coaching rather than just something that presents you with a bunch of drills and systems, then look no further than Thinking Volleyball by Mike Hebert. A 50-year volleyball veteran, the recently retired Hebert offers his latest book as something he sees as at least attempting to fill the gap he perceives in the coaching literature when it comes to learning how to think about volleyball and coaching.

The broad theme of the book is being ready, willing, and able to think beyond the conventional. That’s not as simple as being OK with taking risks in how you do things, though obviously that’s a requirement (Hebert considers himself something of a coaching maverick). It first and foremost requires actually understanding what that conventional wisdom is, why it’s conventional, and its strengths and weaknesses.

There are 10 chapters. One each is dedicated to offensive and defensive philosophy. These are the only two which could be classified as technical/tactical in nature, and even then it’s not the main point. The other eight, in various ways, look at different aspects of coaching – things like running a program, developing a style of play, gym culture, team trust, and match coaching.

Personal anecdotes are a common feature of Hebert’s writing, and he’s got loads of material from which to work. They come from his own playing days and all the major programs he’s coached. My one little criticism is that the stories are strongly biased toward the positive and maybe a few failures could have been mixed in for balance. Let’s face it. Not everything works as intended and we coaches often find ourselves having to figure out how to recover when that’s the case.

One of the more interesting elements of the book is the author’s views toward the modern focus on statistics. This is both in terms of common stats and things like the competitive cauldron. Hebert is a self-described early-career stats evangelist, but he’s come to question their value relative to the amount of time spent gathering them. Not that he discounts stats completely, but he definitely asks the trade-off question, and suggests a potentially more useful way of looking at things.

Chances are, at least one chapter in Thinking Volleyball will cause you to think critically about what you’re doing as a volleyball coach. Hebert has applied his considerable experience and insight into a discussion of just about every aspect of coaching volleyball you could think of, and from all kinds of angles most of us will never have the opportunity to explore personally. From that perspective, I’d recommend it for coaches at all levels and careers stages.

Source by John H Forman

Poetry Monster

Where to Seek Inspiration for Your Lesson Plans

Now that the summer holidays are over and done with, back to school it is. But it can be difficult to get back into the swing of things after such a long break. Have you been finding it challenging to come up with ideas to make those lesson plans more fun and interesting for the kids? Do not fret, there are reliable places you can turn to for inspiration.


It may help to know that you are far from being the only person in need of additional inspiration and support to put together more exciting lesson plans. Fortunately, the education industry has responded to this common demand, and seminars, conferences and exhibitions are now commonplace. Look out for ones organised by the British Council, for example, as well as your local council.

Industry events are a great opportunity to do some networking, brainstorming and idea exchanging. All those present will be willing to share their knowledge, tips and tricks so gather as much of it as you can, and share your own experiences in return. Once you have established relationships with other people in similar positions, you can keep in touch and should not hesitate to contact them for more inspiration in the future.

Informal Meetings

If there is a lack of industry events in your local area, or if they are simply too costly to attend, or at the wrong time, consider organising your own meeting. It does not have to be formal. How about an idea exchange evening down at the local pub with your colleagues? Catching up during coffee breaks and at lunchtime is not enough, and the change of scenery could encourage better ideas.

If possible, get teachers from other local schools on board too, and think about making the event somewhat regular.

Encourage a friendly atmosphere by leading a few icebreaker activities, and then moving on to some brainstorming and idea sharing.

The Internet

It is very easy for likeminded people to meet online, and not just through social networks. With a little bit of digging around on search engines, you will come across forums and blogs with teachers finding themselves in the same position as you. These are the perfect platform for idea exchanges and inspiration.

Various charities and organisations also run websites for teachers keen on adding something new to their lessons, and trying something a little less ordinary. Science resources for teachers, music lesson plans, English games and so much more are all readily available to browse and download, and you will find that most of these are free.

Source by Harvey McEwan

Poetry Monster

Literary Cubism – A Non-Structured Structure For Twenty-first Century Storytelling

The world moves faster these days. From political sound bites to the latest teen idol (who is it this week?) to the rolling scenes of music videos, things come, things go, other things take their place and then they, too, go.

But literature, good literature, is meant for savoring. It lingers. Touches. Whispers. Long after the written words are gone from view, they play music in our minds. Herein lies the conundrum. How can twenty-first century literature be fitted to a world that moves faster, to a public who wants and expects a crashing avalanche of continuous enticement?

One answer: Literary cubism.

The Eleventh Edition of Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary offers a definition of cubism that describes an artistic style of abstract structure which simultaneously displays multiple aspects of the same object in fragmented form.



The “same object” in that working definition is my story. The “multiple aspects” and fragmented forms which I display include poems, e-mail messages, personal notes and legal documents, to name a few. And, yes, there’s room and necessity for blocks of traditional prose in literary cubism.

Cubist writing is liberating. It adds to a writer’s toolbox for telling his or her story. We’ve always had description and dialogue to set scenes, to build moods, and to create consistent, compelling characters. It feels good to now have the text of an e-mail message to do any or all of those things. We can also tap into poems, personal notes, grocery lists, and any other form of written media. These can all be used to great effect to show a lifestyle, to define a character’s motives and psyche, or to paint the tensions and emotional contours of a relationship.

As I said before – liberating.

Enough about theories of liberated lingual expression; how does literary cubism play out in application? Pretty well. In a nutshell, “Resolution 786” tells the story of a philosophical, emotionally wounded American engineer who finds himself in combat operations in the Iraq War while simultaneously trying the Lord for crimes against humanity in a courtroom setting. Literary cubism made it possible to create the tapestry of a unified experience across these wildly disparate settings, an experience of spiritual self-realization in the context of a physical realization of human mortality. Cubism gave me license to develop this multi-pronged storyline and to build my central themes using a variety of literary media presented from the perspectives of many different characters. Indeed, one vignette consists mostly of a set of e-mail messages written by the mothers, wives, daughters, lovers and girlfriends of the soldiers fighting in Iraq. In writing that part of the novel, I was struck by the blunt directness with which an author can develop characters and define relationships through e-mail messages.

But as much license as literary cubism bestows, there are still some “Do Not Drive” lanes on this literary highway. Do not use incorrect grammar, spelling or punctuation (unless you’re Cummings “sketching” a poem onto the page). Do not use flat, un-interesting prose. And, whatever you do, do not let your focus stray from telling a good story. The grandest literary artistry is for naught if you fail to tell a good story.

Yes, with literary cubism, you run risk of having your storyline devolve into un-integrated snippets of plot and story, but you run the same risk in traditional prose. Re-writing, revising and re-imaging enhance the integration of your multiple media. And as one of the characters in Resolution 786 explains while defending against the criticism of realism in Kafka’s The Metamorphosis:

“I don’t think The Metamorphosis really happened. Samsa didn’t turn into an insect. If he had turned into an insect, he would have stopped considering his own consciousness. No, Samsa became a human being who was trapped inside an insect, which is fundamentally different than becoming an insect. And as far as being realistic, if a work of artistic expression doesn’t have a traditional structure, that doesn’t mean that, taken as a whole, it doesn’t still have some valuable or otherwise instructive form or substance.”

So go ahead and wake up an insect. Go ahead and put the Lord on trial. And feel free to use a cubist structure through it all.

I find literary cubism to be a sharp, fresh and consistently interesting method for constructing novels. Considering how fast our world moves today, how flashed and multi-variant our entertainment media and tastes are, I’m surprised that more writers don’t use cubism. It’s an ideal structure for story telling in the twenty-first century.

Source by Mohamed Mughal

Poetry Monster

Leptisol and a Little Inspiration to Aid Weight Loss

When you’re trying to lose weight, there’s always some goal, some target weight to reach, and there are only a few ways to go about reaching that target. Some people restrict heavily, others try strenuous work outs, and some seek the easy way out by trying easy, fad diets.

It’s important, however, when attempting to lose weight, that there is some level of inspiration involved. If you’re not inspired to lose weight by some person, thing, or place, it makes it that much harder to drop the pounds, and that much easier to give up.

While visualizing yourself at your target weight is what inspires most people, a lot of people turn to celebrities or models to become inspired. It was estimated recently that 41.3 million people watched the Oscar’s this year, and aside from finding out who won best supporting actress, there’s no doubt that the most exciting part of the ceremony was watching the svelte stars shimmy down the red carpet. Such high-profile events can serve as one way to become inspired to start eating right.

Lately, celebrity trainers and dieters have been seeking an all-natural supplement called Leptisol. Because the active ingredient in Leptisol is Assam Fruit, a sour fruit with anti-bacterial and antioxidant activity, the supplement has the astonishing capability to turn fat storage in the body into energy. Quite simply, it turns all the carbohydrates you consume into energy, rather than fat. That way, it’s easier to lose belly fat on the right workout routine, without having to keep everything tasty off limits.

So ask yourself. What inspires you to lose weight? Whatever the answer, it’s not as hard as you think with an all-natural supplement like Leptisol doing all the hard work for you. Whoever said losing weight had to be hard?

Source by Monique C Muro

Poetry Monster

Creative Ideas – The Biggest Reason You Don’t Have Enough Good Creative Ideas

Would you say you have all the great creative ideas you need? Enough ideas that you can just grab one anytime you need and, fresh with inspiration, dive head first into creating another wonderful piece of art?

If so, you’ve obviously found a highly effective way of generating ideas. Stick with it, it’ll be one of the most powerful tools you have in realising your creative potential.

If you haven’t, and if coming up with ANY ideas seems a major struggle – let alone a steady flow of great ideas – then obviously this has a seriously limiting impact on your creativity.

Ideas are the raw materials – the moment of birth of each creative project – and without an idea as a starting point, there’s simply nothing to develop, nothing to shape and create from.

So why don’t you have enough ideas?

Well, the truth is you probably DO have all the ideas you’ll ever need. But you just don’t realise that you do!

Your creative mind is permanently on, making connections that weren’t there before, it’s impossible to switch it off. The problem is, most of the ideas it presents you with you dismiss as being silly or unrealistic or not usable, or – and this is one of the most common and most fatal mistakes – you reject your idea because it doesn’t appear completely realised, as a finished creative project in every possible detail, gift-wrapped with a big red bow on top!

It’s like starting a tennis academy to develop young players then rejecting everyone who applies because they haven’t yet won a Grand Slam tournament or they’re not ranked in the top 5 players in the world.

Then, even those ideas that DO manage to fall through the cracks and make it past your strict admission criteria, the ones where you think “Hey that idea’s got potential, I think I’ll use that later”, don’t get used. Why? Because moments after you have them, you forget them again! Then, days later you remember having a great idea but you haven’t a clue what it was!

So how can you have more good creative ideas?

There are two key elements we’ve talked about already. The first is being overly critical or having unrealistic expectations of your ideas to arrive perfectly formed. The second is forgetting your ideas before you have a chance to do anything with them.

The solution to both of these is simple. Get yourself an Ideas Book, just a small pocket notebook you can carry with you to jot down those ideas as soon as they appear.

Then, each time you have an idea, BEFORE you cast it aside as not worthy or complete enough, write or sketch it down in your Ideas Book. In a matter of days, your book will start to fill with fragments of ideas in many different stages of development.

Now, a quick reality check. You’ll never be able to develop each and every idea you ever have. And yes, some of the ideas you record with great excitement and anticipation will turn out to not really come to anything. That’s OK, it’s all part of the ideas process.

Once you have in place a way of capturing your ideas, and are prepared to let them incubate and evolve in their own time, you’ll find a steady flow of great ideas will be right at your fingertips, ready for you whenever you need them.

Source by Dan Goodwin