Ideas to Actions

We, as human beings, have a zillion ideas flying around in that mind of ours. Yet as Charles Landry once said “the single biggest problem in the world is not finding great ideas but getting great ideas to move, to flow” and this will be the focus of my post. I aim at showing how to move from ideas to actions. From dreams to reality.

Drowning in our ideas and getting stuck on what to do is in itself a thinking problem, a self-inflicted problem in most cases. What we need is to rethink our way of thinking about ideas to create the right movement in the right direction, the rest will follow.

Here are few steps to consider:

Rethink complexity.
We create complexities, mind barriers and problems by simply over-analyzing our situation, given and capabilities. Often outsiders see things more objectively and clearly, so do share your ideas and “worries” with some trusted people to get feedback and their perspective before you jumpy into over-analyzing.

Rethink systems.
If you’re in a “system”… be it a work environment, friends, community or physical location that is being resistant to change, to comply to new ideas…rethink the system. If you have the power to change the system before you tackle new ideas, do so…if not, then start searching for a newer system that better encourages the very behavior and ideas you seek.

Rethink ego.
Our ego can sometimes hinder us from exploring new ideas, from realizing our failures, our limitations and our resources. We keep on rearranging the deck chairs on a sinking ship by keeping busy and deceiving ourselves that we’re making progress.

Rethink boundaries.
No idea is too big or too far-fetched, growth and progress often needs exploring new territory, so do take that leap of faith to go into undiscovered forests.

Rethink habits.
We are what we do often, so do reflect on your habits and see whether those are pushing you forward towards achieving your dreams and implementing those ideas or are they pulling you back? Failing to realize the impact your habits have on you might mean that you’ll stay stuck where you are.

Rethink failure and success.
Two faces of one coin, one cannot come without the other. If you’re afraid of being wrong, embarrassed by failure or paralyzed by insecurity, you will never find the solutions that lead to meaningful growth.. On the other hand, you need to know what success looks like. Muddy expectations lead to exhaustion and defeat before you even get started. Praise short-term accomplishments to appeal to your heart and not just your head. It will keep your ideas moving along.

Rethink the possible.
In most cases it just needs that extra push, that bit of motivation, that one voice to tell you “Everything is feasible!”. Many of the things that seem possible and even trivial today were once impossible, so don’t let anything hold you back and go for it!

Seven simple steps with a great impact. Everything is feasible and all ideas can materialize, dreams can become reality…and it’s all in your head!

  1. September 24, 2010 at 2:04 am


    Good post (as usual) 🙂 but I think you missed 2 important elements for ideas to turn into actions: leadership and constraints.

    Leadership: It is the leader who can the be guide, the tutor, the motivator and the eye-opener of any group of people with ideas. Someone should warn them when they fall into mistakes, stop them when they go in the wrong direction, open their eyes when they miss the details, and most of all motivate them when he or she feels that the morale is low and the will is weak. The thing is – a group of people with ideas often falls in the trap of getting too drowned in these ideas – they seem like forgetting about their action or paying little attention to its urgency. Here the leader comes in to set things straight, cut the waste of time and scream out a big “YALLA SHABEIB…LETS GET TO WORK” … and start delegating.

    A group who lacks such an individual will find a hard time moving on.

    The second element is constraints. Its nice to dream. But its not fancy to think of overly-ambitious ideas which may be way beyond our capabilities. A group should be aware of its resources and constraints and draft ideas accordingly – as a start. Yes, as you mentioned its worth considering ‘pushing a few limits’ in order to accomplish something, but this is not always possible when your idea is neither realistic nor considerate of your limits. Some limits cannot be easily pushed, especially when there’s a time factor.

    Once again, good post.

  2. Riwa Shatila
    September 24, 2010 at 10:19 am

    One of the your best articles! 🙂

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