Your Greenhouse for Nurturing New IdeasNov 05, 2020
How kind are you to new ideas?
Do you nurture them like a gardener tending to baby shoots or interrogate them as if they are a crime suspect?!
I often liken new ideas to seedlings. Baby sparks of creativity, vulnerable and full of potential.
I suggest tending to them in a metaphorical Greenhouse.
We hopefully plant the seeds of our ideas, not knowing how they will fare. We nurture them with sun, water and kindness and protect them from hardship and frost and, over time, some grow healthy and strong.
Some may not respond and may wither or go dormant for a while.
We might give selected seedling ideas special attention & invest in fertiliser that's just right for them.
We might have many ideas on the go at once or just a select few. We may have limited space for fully grown plants but we can tend to many ideas in the greenhouse and it can be a way of keeping many dreams and ambitions alive whilst in reality you are only able to commit to and pursue a limited number.
Over time, one strong idea might come to the fore for your next venture. Or maybe you'll want the variety and balance of doing more than one thing.
Your seedling might look one way as one shoot but then grow into a plant that looks completely different. Maybe the ideas will cross fertilise each other and you'll end up with a combo.
These options are only possibilities if you are a good gardener.
Seedling ideas are easily squashed by criticism and judgement, however well-meaning. Of course you will need to explore if your ideas are viable, evaluate and ask difficult questions but this can only happen once your ideas have reached a level of maturity. Until then you need to protect them and treat them with kindness.
This means taking care who you share your ideas with and being clear what you want from those you do involve. If you can give your inner critic some time off, great! But this isn't something to struggle with.
In the same way you would be foolish to judge a seedling for not being a tree, know your critical thoughts are really not about your fresh ideas, they more of a tiresome habit. When you don't listen to that critical voice, it has no power.
It's so important to nurture ideas for a new business, coaching can be invaluable for opening up to fresh possibilities and directions, giving your ideas the best treatment to help them unfold and take shape.
You can keep your greenhouse in your mind's eye or translate it to a physical notebook, box or online space. Check in with your ideas regularly and trust that it's in their nature to grow.