Wouldn’t it be amazing as a writer if ideas just appeared on demand, like flies at a summer BBQ? Unfortunately though getting and having a good supply of ideas takes work.
I have yet to experience a consistent ability to sit down to write and suddenly an idea pops into my head. Almost everything comes from ideas that I have and write down. Only coming back later to flesh the idea out and write the post about it.
You Are Reading an Example in This Post
The post you are reading is one such example as it comes from a real-life experience. Earlier this year I was listening to one of my favourite podcasts, Impact Theory. The guest for the episode was a guy I had never heard of before named, James Altucher.
There was a piece in the episode that caught my attention when James started talking about the idea of capturing 10 ideas a day. He talks about writing down ten ideas every day not to get a lot of great ideas but to exercise the idea muscle. Referring to the idea muscle just like any other muscle, that with exercise it will get stronger and more reliable.
You can see that I had the idea for this post by listening to a podcast earlier in the year. At the time it was just an idea that I wrote down, back in March. Now it is coming together as a blog post that I am sharing with you. That six or seven months that it has taken to expand out. While not every idea I have takes that long to bring together there are also some that never get beyond an idea.
Building The Idea Muscle
Taking the time to just write out ten ideas a day does not sound like a big thing. But since I heard about this idea back in March, I have not taken the initiative to write down ten ideas any day yet. Over this time there have been some challenging situations in my life. But those are now in the past and I am looking forward to getting started on building my idea muscle.
I think the biggest single thing that has caused me not to take any steps towards this yet is a lack of structure. I think there are two things that I need in place to make this as simple to take advantage of as I can.
- A specific notepad or notebook for my daily 10 ideas.
- Schedule a time of day that I do this each day.
I think that if I can get these into place that will help alleviate any perceived challenges to making this a daily habit. Over time exercising the idea muscle should become second nature. But as with anything that will just take a little time to build.
In the beginning, 10 ideas per day doesn’t seem like a lot. However, when you start to do the maths it quick does add up to quite a lot. That is 70 ideas per week, 300 per month and 3,650 ideas over the course of a year.
What that means is that you do not have to come up with an extensive amount of great ideas. In just one year you would have more ideas than you would know what to write. Even if you were to use more than one idea a day and assumed that half of the ideas would suck.
Initially, I think that it might take a little time each day to get in the swing of getting the ideas. But that is the idea of building the muscle, the more you spend time doing this the easier it is going to get. I imagine that down the track it would also mean you might get better at having better ideas.
How Do You Get Ideas
I am always open to new ideas. So even though I am going to give this a go, I would like to hear what you do to get ideas. A quick comment below or get in touch and let me know.