Most of our days are consumed with this activity. Daydreaming and zoning off while at work, they are on our minds and keeping us entertained. We lay awake at night some times creating them. I am talking about ideas. It is amazing some of the ideas that we come up with or that pop into our head when we least expect it. I love the sensation of creating a new idea and just thinking about how awesome it would be. In that is the issue though. Most of the time we let it die there and simply enjoy the process of creating an idea, but get lethargic about making that idea a reality or business. Creating the idea is only 1% of the process, the other 99% is the work and organization it takes to get it started.
Thomas Edison said it best in his quote “Genius is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration.” This is an area that I have a hard time with, as do a lot of average citizens. We get distracted with the inspiration and then give up on the perspiration as our desire fizzles out. This can be for several reasons; scared of the risk, afraid of the work, or they are just not organized enough to actually make their dreams become reality. This last point is one that the book Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles from Vision to Reality.
Getting organized is no easy task. Many people lack the discipline it takes to start their own businesses, which is why, according to a study by Babson College there are only 25 million entrepreneurs in the United States when there are 328 million citizens. Though 25 million is a growing number it shows that a large majority of our population does not have the drive and organizational skills it takes to start their own business.
One third of our New Year’s goals are abandoned before January is over. Goal setting is essentially what you are doing when you start a business. Mark Murphy reported on a study that shows when someone writes down their ideas and goals they are 1.2 to 1.4 more likely to successful achieve their goals.
He also talked about the “generation effect”. We as humans have a higher capability to remember our own ideas overtop of others. This is why we reword other peoples ideas to make them our own as well. With the “generation effect”, it is important that we write down our ideas, because it gives us a double dose of it. Not only do we have our original idea that sticks, but as we write it down we get to think more about it. We actually narrow it down some and think it through which makes it more real and attainable.
Writing these things down makes the idea seem more attainable. That is just a start in work. It is the beginning to the 99% we have to partake in. Actually planning and thinking through the 1%. The hardest part of starting our business or even just achieving goals is getting started on the work. So next time you have an idea or something you want to accomplish, take some time to jot it down and think it through. Even create some steps to make it happen, then get to work.
- Babson College. “Global Entrepreneurship Monitor United States Report.” What Is Hazing | Hazing Definition | Babson College, http://www.babson.edu/about/news-events/babson-announcements/global-entrepreneurship-monitor-united-states-report/.
- “U.S. Population (LIVE).” United Arab Emirates Population (2018) – Worldometers, http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/us-population/.
- Murphy, Mark. “Neuroscience Explains Why You Need To Write Down Your Goals If You Actually Want To Achieve Them.” Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 15 Apr. 2018,
- Belsky, Scott. Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles between Vision and Reality. Portfolio/Penguin, 2012.
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