Do you have the entrepreneurial spirit, but have no big business idea? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Aspiration is always more plentiful than successful business ideas.
That being said, it can be frustrating to see others come up with idea after idea. Believe me, I know from experience.
And, let’s be honest, you can’t exactly start a business without something to sell. So, just getting started can sometimes be the hardest part.
It is for this reason that I wanted to give you some pointers on how to connect with your creative side and become an idea machine. Take a gander at the three habits I adopted to get my creative juices flowing.
1. Read and Read Everything
By far, the best way to increase your idea-making prowess is to read. (Tweet this!)
Growing up, Elon Musk read two books per day; Bill Gates says he reads about 50 books each year; and Warren Buffett claims to spend 80% of his work day reading. Buffett even goes as far as to say that the number one step for achieving success is to read a lot.
But, why do these eminent people hold reading in such high esteem?
The answer is simple: The more you know, the more you understand.
There’s a big difference between knowing about something and understanding something. The former allows you to recognize it, while the latter allows you to dissect it. Reading gives you deeper knowledge on a wider variety of subjects.
[Image source: Divante]
Business ideas come from seeing a connection between two or more topics. Consider Apple and their creation of the iPhone and the iWatch or Tesla and their creation of the fully electric car and the wall battery. These creators first saw a connection and then brought the ideas to life.
So, ideas begin in the abstract and you need to educate yourself so that you can think abstractly about the world.
Need some science to back up this claim?
Just check out this study. The researchers found that reading novels significantly improved the connections in the subject’s brains the day that they read the novel and the effects lasted for several days afterwards.
Simply stated, the more connections you have in your brain, the faster you will think and create ideas.
So read; read everything.
2. Stop Thinking
Have you ever wondered why you sometimes can’t recall something, even though it is at the tip of your tongue?
Well… one theory, called Blocking, states that the neurons which fire in your brain, attempting to track down the information you want, at times take a left turn instead of a right one. So, the neurons end up at a dead end that is close to, but not actually at, the planned destination.
This is why you feel so close, but just not quite there.
The problem is that no matter how hard you try, you can’t actively get the neurons to back up and take the correct turn. All you can do is stop thinking about it. In this way, your brain can take a breather and, after a while, your subconscious often kicks in and tracks down the information, causing that later aha moment.
The same thing happens when we try to come up with ideas or solutions to problems. Our brain gets going in a certain mode, but then we hit a dead end.
The last thing you should do when this occurs is try to power through. Instead, take a break and come back to the problem or idea process. Your brain will just need 20 to 30 minutes, before you can take another run at the problem.
This isn’t to say that you’ll get it the first time around. Most likely you’ll go through this process for days, weeks or even years, before the great answer shows it’s beautiful face.
All I’m saying is that you’re not doing yourself any favors by trying to force your brain to work overtime. It’s just biology.
3. Every Business Idea Is Worth Exploring
Lastly, don’t be afraid of bad ideas.
Every company and entrepreneur is looking for the next great idea, but they often don’t realize that the best ideas are only found after many bad ones.
You need to strike out a few times to really know what a home run feels like. If you focus all of your energy only on good ideas, you’ll miss out on the great ideas.
So, don’t let the fear of pursuing a bad idea scare you. Even if an idea seems bad now, write it down and keep it for later.
Hence, brainstorming can be beneficial: The fear of bad business ideas is set aside and the mind can play with its creativity.
You can brainstorm with yourself or with others. Just be sure to allow the process to proceed unabated by your own insecurity. Remember, a mistake is only a failure if you learn nothing from it. The idea-creation process is no different.
Take risks, make mistakes, and learn.
So, how do you come up with a creative business idea? Please feel free to let us know in the comments section below and we will add it in this article and give you full credit.