Chapter 2. Before the Storm. Idea generation book

‘Imagination rules the world’ © Napoleon
With this pre-idea generation chapter let’s move from abstract entrepreneurs and creativity concepts directly to You!

Einstein once said that ‘I have no special talents, I am only passionately curious’.


Can you think straightaway if there is something that you are so passionately curious about? It normally engages your mind so it sparks! What is it?

Why it is all so important?


Simply because we do not want anyone, including us, to waste time and live somebody else’s life!

During this whole ‘Me’ exercise take notes, create a swap file at which you can access online or on-the-go in your Notes section.


You can record your night dreams there, but also copy quotes and clippings, ads, notes, links etc. Nurture your future ideas. 

Start this journey with getting to know what you enjoy doing.


It is not about re-invention: it is just an honest truth about what really matters to you. Be honest with yourself and you get the starting point right!

Entrepreneurs should be aware of who they are (values, tastes) and what they know (expertise, knowledge, experience, skills).

To continue this exercise, make a list of something you really do not want to do. 

Then slightly reverse your thinking and identify the opposites of these worst cases.


‘The faculty of imagination is the great spring of human activity, and the principle source of human improvement’ © Dugold Stewart (Scottish philosopher)

Have a break and have ‘YOUR’ day, only do stuff you like.


When on 'your' day, think about how unique you are.

It is about a competitive advantage of your inner self - what skills and passions are making you a unique individual?

Ask Questions!

Become your own therapist! What sort of things you fill your head with? What do you read? Do you subscribe to anything? Be honest and open about the things you like.

There is no guilt in your pleasures!

Make a list of your current sources - what do you read on the web, buy magazines, watch TV..

Don’t worry, it is all fairly simple.

You need to be enthusiastic about this discovery.

Develop wishes, they tend to inspire ideas.

It is not all the time about complexity of ideas - it is mostly about simple ideas that are fantastically well implemented.

You don’t need to be superhuman for it, just make this first bold step!

Fears are creeping in?

Analyse your fears: is it fear of choice (we always decide on something neutral, just not to fail!) or fear of judgement (think about it - ideas are just yours!)?

Become fearless, try this exercise - write down your thoughts about things you will do if you knew you would never fail?

A. Palmer said “The harder I practise the luckier I get”.

Work, ideate and be prepared to anticipate opportunities. You can create your own luck! Being in the right place at the right time is just being in the right state of mind.

This state of mind can be found in networks, as ideas have a tendency to float, spillover and converge.
You get smarter when you are connected to a network. It creates an environment where ideas can connect to each other and develop into something meaningful for you. is one of such networks aiming to help with the ideas flow. It is like a dating service for promising hunches. It is easier to disseminate ideas, but also to complete ideas!

So what happens when you are connected?

It reminds of survival of the fittest, as ideas need to connect and compete with each other. Ideas will reinvent themselves by crossing conceptual borders (check boundary hopping techniques in the next chapters of this book).

Our quick advice about diversification practice: you should consider to widen your networks and connect with people you are not normally surrounded with (it gives a powerful novelty factor).


To compete with others in your chosen industry you need to add something else from other fields. Most new ideas are just extensions and blends of already existing knowledge.

Extend yourself into different and unfamiliar areas of knowledge and practice, consider extending into your discomfort zones.

That’s where you will find wow ideas.

This search needs to become a habit.

Your creativity should have a purpose and some clear restrictions (your clear wants and needs). Purpose will motivate and provide answers why you do that, restrictions add some urgency to it.

Example with EvilJoy: We believe that society rich in entrepreneurship and innovation benefits all of us.

Remember, ideas flow better without judgement, it just inhibits you. You never come up with anything original if you are not prepared to be wrong. Stop judging and just do it.

We all have ideas, but inspiration expires.

Start doing it today. Inspiration is magical!

14 May 2014