The most difficult task at work is coming up with an innovative idea. When you know you have to blow your boss’ mind off, you tend to get skeptical and start doubting your capabilities. Some people start watching motivational videos, others start doing case studies and things like that. However, inspiration will find you when your mind is at rest – not when you are browsing the internet in panic.
After years of hardships in IT industry, I have realized one thing. The best ideas I have come up with are the one I have while walking; when my mind and body both are at peace. Yes that sounds clichéd but it’s true.
I find both respite and creative ideas flowing while walking. But everyone has a different way of finding ideas. If you are struggling to find an idea or inspiration – whether you are a writer, project manager or looking to start a company – here are five insanely easy strategies you can use to find inspiration.
1.Know your business, study the depth of the waters you are in
If you don’t have product knowledge, you will never be confident in selling it – it’s as simple as that. It is important that you keep yourself closely knit with the industry you are aiming for. It is not hard. The best way is to keep an eye on competitors. See what they are doing, analyze their strengths and weaknesses.
Rivalry will give you a purpose. When you start competing, you will automatically become better. You will also get an accurate idea of your shortcomings. You will get a clear idea of what needs to be done in order to attain the position you are desiring.
2.Take small steps, don’t start running straight away
Ambition is good but it is often confused with unrealistic planning. When you get an idea, first you have to plan on how to achieve it. First step is always the hardest; project planning. Once you have planned and outlined your goal, you get a clear picture of how you will be proceeding.
I always say whenever you need to make a presentation to your bosses or work on a product idea, start sketching it. I mean literally get a pen and paper and start writing down the details of your idea and its scope. By the time you are finished, you will feel the creative juices starting to flow.
3.Find a soothing activity, clear your mind
This is what we talked about at the beginning of the article; your happy place. Fishing, running jogging, counting stars, playing videos games – do whatever eases your mind. Don’t think of business and work while you are doing this activity. Think of it like you are giving yourself a relief from your crazy work life. And then suddenly, out of nowhere, an idea will strike you.
Mind works best when it is at ease. In business world, you don’t have to plan for the next 2-3 hours, you have to plan for decades ahead. And that takes peace of mind.
4.Find a way to document and “save” your ideas
It is hard to come up with a brilliant idea but it is easy to forget it. Keep your ideas close to you. Store them in a way that you won’t forget them.
The land where I come from, there is a true story about a poet Mirza Assadullah Khan Ghalib. When he’d beget an idea for a poem, he would take a string and start trying knots on it, one knot for each line. He would wake up next morning. He would take that piece of string, go to his study table, start opening the knots one by one while penning down the poem. He said this practice never let him down.
What will make you remember an idea next day? – making short notes, writing it down, creating an excel sheet etc. Whatever works for you, but make sure that you document your ideas.
5.Get feedback on your idea from a diverse group of people
The success of any idea depends on people – unless your product is specific to a single genre, the people are diverse; therefore the product has to be applicable to a group of people. Start talking to your friends, classmates, neighbors, colleagues about your idea, get their feedback.
Any feedback they provide is valuable, for remember this, you may think your idea is perfect but others might not. This way you will get a reality check before you launch your product. Whilst talking to different people, you will find inspiration, you will find motivation to act. Imagine someone praising your idea, how would that make you feel? – You would want to start working on it. Now imagine someone not praising your idea and suggesting tweaks – You will start striving to make the product better. Either way you will find motivation to act!