I fear your idea because I don't understand it

Today, the always informative Lifehacker links to a little gem on How to Kill Ideas.

I’m always a big fan of the negative example. And the negative space. And the negative attitude.

Oh wait. I have a negative attitude. I always get so confused.

Where were we? Ah yes.

I always appreciate the negative examples because those actually make me think. They make me self-reflective. And maybe, just maybe, a tad bit guilty about things I’ve done in the past. Like leaving the toilet seat up. And shooting down other people’s ideas.

But here’s what dawned on me for every single one of the responses in the original post, Idea killers: ways to stop ideas:

  1. These are all responses of the fearful.
  2. This fear stems from ignorance.
  3. The respondent is ignorant because I failed to communicate effectively.

Now, here’s the thing. Apart from the fact that I like to call myself a failure (it motivates me), it occurs to me that the breakdown is because I generally assume a level of competence in the listener that doesn’t exist.

See, here’s the thing. And I’ll likely repeat this over and over, in a variety of posts, because it’s really important. You should say it to yourself as a little mantra: No one spends as much time thinking about what I do as I do. Therefore, not everyone has the depth of context that I do to make the intuitive leaps that seem simple to me.

That means it’s my responsibility to communicate more effectively. I have to simplify my approach. I have to provide the context.

So, review the list. And commit it to heart. And when you hear these words, don’t start to sniffle, gentle reader. Instead, start simplifying and revising. And repositioning. Your idea is less likely to be shot down once they understand your genius.

Remember, no one spends as much time thinking about what you do as you do.

About Rick Turoczy

More than mildly obsessed with the Portland startup community. Founder and editor at Silicon Florist. Cofounder and general manager at PIE. Follow me on Twitter: @turoczy
This entry was posted in Fear, Ignorance, Simplify, Wrong. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to I fear your idea because I don't understand it

  1. Pingback: More on fear and stifling creativity | More than a living

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