When people are stuck, especially entrepreneurs, the problem is rarely a lack of ideas. We’re a creative lot.
The problem is we often have too many ideas. We suffer from Overly Creative Disorder – which, trust me, is a lot more fun than my Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, but still leaves us stuck in the sand. Business owners and entrepreneurs are often bombarded with millions of opportunities and possibilities. Sounds great, right? But if you’ve ever been there, this can leave you feeling overwhelmed or stuck with all these ideas and all these thoughts running through your head.
The problem is, they’re likely all really great ideas.
A colleague and great friend of mine coaches first-time authors in writing their own books. She sees this same problem: “Most people have more than one book in them. But they try to cram it all into one book or they can’t figure out which book to start with. I always tell them to pick one idea and run with it. If they don’t pick one and stick with it, they end up bouncing around and not getting any of their ideas on paper.”
Thanks to that friend, I finally wrote my book. My head was swimming with so many ideas – brilliant ideas, I must say (just so you know, this is another symptom of Overly Creative Disorder: thinking every idea is brilliant.) I had so much I wanted to share with the world; so many ways I wanted to make a difference. It was noisy in my head. But Heather had this amazing ability to turn down the noise and have me get clear about what I was committed to.
This one direct question in particular changed the game for me and quieted the noise: “Why do you want to write a book?” My answer wasn’t my knee-jerk response that I wanted to make the difference that changes everything. I did want to make a difference in the world, but truthfully, that wasn’t my main driver. It was something more personal. I wanted to write a book because it was a challenge. I’d always been good at communicating in spoken words my insights and view of the world, but could I do that with the written word? Once that became clear, it was game on. Everything fell into place.
I was fascinated by how a simple question and then a structure to support me quietened my OCD (Overly Creative Disorder). If only there was such a simple solution for my other OCD, I’d be a very happy camper.
I have a challenge for you. Pick an area in your life where you think your OCD (Overly Creative Disorder) is keeping you stuck and ask yourself, why are you doing what you’re doing? I invite you to ignore your knee-jerk reaction and instead really take some time and sit with it. You might be surprised!
In my next post I’ll share some insight into how at Wasabi Publicity (where this disorder runs rampant) we introduced structures to keep our team’s creative juices flowing without getting stuck.