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5 Ways To Find Out If Your Idea Is Worth Pursuing

5 Ways To Find Out If Your Idea Is Worth Pursuing

So you’ve got a creative idea that you think might be worth pursuing, but you’re just not sure. As with any new creative pursuit knowing whether your idea has legs can be difficult. To help you make the decision, I’m going to share with you five ways to find out if your idea is worth pursuing.

1. Create a Minimum Viable Product

The very best way to find out if your idea is worth pursuing is to create a minimum viable product. A minimum viable product has only the most basic core features of your idea and nothing more i.e. no bells and whistles! Creating a minimum viable product allows you to get your idea out there in front of people to get valuable feedback without putting exorbitant amounts of time and money into its creation. After all, your idea may not float in which case its back to the drawing board. Virgin Airlines started with a single 747 in 1984 on one route. From this minimal service they were able to determine whether the idea was worth pursuing. Today Virgin Airlines is a booming business, but like many others they started out small.

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2. Test it Out

Once you’ve got a minimum viable product out there it’s time to test it out! Get real people using it and use it yourself. Does it work? Can it be improved? How? Testing your idea and answering these big questions will help you decide if your idea is worth pursuing. Twitter started out as a small service among just a handful of friends. In these early days they were able to test the service and improve on it based on results. Today Twitter is a booming online service with millions of active users sharing daily.

3. Seek Feedback Regularly

Seeking feedback is not something that happens just once in a testing phase. Seeking feedback regularly while bringing your idea to life will help you find out if it’s worth pursuing every step along the way and importantly if you’re on the right track as you progress. The best feedback is from those people who most closely fit your target market i.e. the intended end users of your product or service. You can also seek initial feedback from friends and family. Although these people are potentially not in your target market they will likely have some good feedback nonetheless. Gather as much feedback as you can as often as you can to give your idea the best chance of success.

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4. Assess the Level of Passion in Responses

To find out if your idea is worth pursuing you’ll need to assess how passionate the response is toward your idea. Rate responses on a scale of 1-10 and keep track of the scores over time. It can be as simple as keeping score in a computer spreadsheet and regularly checking in to see how you’re tracking over time. Passion is a great predictor of success so start assessing it early on to get a good idea of whether your idea is worth pursuing and how the level of passion among users is changing over time.

5. Be Excited in the Early Stages

You’ll never know if your idea is worth pursuing if you don’t put everything you have into it in the early stages. Don’t be shy of sharing your idea with others around you and pursuing it fully. Get out there are really put your idea out there for the world to see! Be excited and throw yourself into the process by putting your heart and soul into it and you’ll be rewarded with progress and being one step closer to having a stellar idea that others want to be part of. Being excited, passionate and committed in the early stages will give your idea the best chance of success and help you find out if it’s worth pursuing further.

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You might also like: How to Consistently Come Up With Great Ideas

Featured photo credit trophygeek via Flickr CC.

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Featured photo credit: trophygeek via Flickr CC via flickr.com

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Last Updated on October 16, 2019

Invaluable Lessons You Can Learn From Your Mistakes

Invaluable Lessons You Can Learn From Your Mistakes

Do you like making mistakes?

I certainly don’t.

Making mistakes is inevitable. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could be at ease with them?

Perhaps there is a way to think of them differently and see their benefits.

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Why Mistakes Feel Dangerous

Mistakes often feel dangerous. Throughout human history, our errors have often been treated as dangerous for a variety of reasons:

  • Our vulnerability. We have limited and fragile support systems. When those systems fail, people often lose their lives.
  • Real dangers. Nature can be dangerous, and making mistakes can put us at the mercy of nature and its animal residents seeking a meal.
  • Ignorance. Many cultures scapegoats someone whenever there is a failure of some kind. Scapegoating can be serious and deadly.
  • Order. Many societies punish those who do not conform to the prevailing orthodoxy and treat difference and non-conformity as a mistake. Even our brains flash an error message whenever we go against prevailing social norms.

We have a history of handling mistakes and failure in an unpleasant way. Since each of us carries our human history with us, it can be a challenge to overcome the fear of making mistakes.

If we can embrace the reality of mistakes, we can free ourselves to be more creative in our lives and dig up some interesting insights.

Why We Can’t Avoid Making Mistakes

Many people operate under the notion that making mistakes is an aberration, a mistake if you will. You can call it perfectionism but it is a more substantial problem. It is really a demand for order and continuity.

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When we think we can eliminate mistakes, we are often working from a perspective that sees the world as a fixed place. The world, however, is not so obliging. Like it or not, the world, and everything in it, is constantly changing.

Change is more constant and pervasive than we can see with our own eyes which is why we often miss it. Our bodies are constantly changing. The natural conditions of the earth change constantly as well. Everything, including economic and cultural systems have life cycles. Everything is in a constant state of flux.

We cannot see all of the changes going on around us since rates of change vary. Unfortunately, when we try to create a feeling of certainty and solidity in our lives or operate from the illusion of stability and order, we are fighting reality and our natural evolution which is built on adapting to change.

It is better to continually bend into this reality rather than fight every change we experience. Fighting it can cause us to make more mistakes. Finding the benefits in change can be useful and help us minimize unnecessary mistakes.

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Lessons Learned from Making Mistakes

Life has so many uncertainties and variables that mistakes are inevitable. Fortunately, there are many things you can learn from making mistakes.

Here is a list of ways to harness the mistakes you make for your benefit.

  1. Point us to something we did not know.
  2. Reveal a nuance we missed.
  3. Deepen our knowledge.
  4. Tell us something about our skill levels.
  5. Help us see what matters and what does not.
  6. Inform us more about our values.
  7. Teach us more about others.
  8. Let us recognize changing circumstances.
  9. Show us when someone else has changed.
  10. Keep us connected to what works and what doesn’t work.
  11. Remind us of our humanity.
  12. Spur us to want to better work which helps us all.
  13. Promote compassion for ourselves and others.
  14. Teach us to value forgiveness.
  15. Help us to pace ourselves better.
  16. Invite us to better choices.
  17. Can teach us how to experiment.
  18. Can reveal a new insight.
  19. Can suggest new options we had not considered.
  20. Can serve as a warning.
  21. Show us hidden fault lines in our lives which can lead us to more productive arrangements.
  22. Point out structural problems in our lives.
  23. Prompt us to learn more about ourselves.
  24. Remind us how we are like others.
  25. Make us more humble.
  26. Help us rectify injustices in our lives.
  27. Show us where to create more balance in our lives.
  28. Tell us when the time to move on has occurred.
  29. Reveal where our passion is and where it is not.
  30. Expose our true feelings.
  31. Bring out problems in a relationship.
  32. Can be a red flag for our misjudgments.
  33. Point us in a more creative direction.
  34. Show us when we are not listening.
  35. Wake us up to our authentic selves.
  36. Can create distance with someone else.
  37. Slow us down when we need to.
  38. Can hasten change.
  39. Reveal our blind spots.
  40. Are the invisible made visible.

Reframe Reality to Handle Mistakes More Easily

The secret to handling mistakes is to:

  • Expect them as part of the process of growth and development.
  • Have an experimental mindset.
  • Think in evolutional rather than fixed terms.

When we accept change as the natural structure of the world, our vulnerability and humanness lets us work with the ebb and flow of life.

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When we recognize the inevitability of mistakes as part of the ongoing experiment which life is, then we can relax more. In doing so we may make fewer of them.

It also helps to keep in mind that trial and error is an organic natural way of living. It is how we have evolved over time. It is better to be with our natural evolution than to fight it and make life harder.

When we adopt an evolutional mindset and see ourselves as part of the ongoing human experiment, we can appreciate that all that has been built up over time which includes the many mistakes our ancestors have made over thousands of years. Each one of us today is a part of that human tradition of learning and experimenting,

Mistakes are part of the trial and error, experimental nature of life. The more you adopt the experimental, evolutional frame, the easier it becomes to handle mistakes.

Handling mistakes well can help you relax and enjoy all aspects of life more.

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Featured photo credit: Sarah Kilian via unsplash.com

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