Thursday, August 20, 2009

A Doomed Love Affair

This post originally appeared in the STOX Scribe dated Aug. 18, 2009

I often hear from readers who have a Great Idea. They are persuaded their ideas can't be beat. If only they could get some money from somewhere (the government, maybe?) they know will make a million dollars and, more importantly of course, save humankind with their brilliant ideas.

Herein lies the danger: It's great to like your idea, but you must not fall in love with your idea.

You know how lovers in that googly-eyed romantic stage are adoringly blind to each others' faults? It's the same thing when you have an affair with your idea.

Liking your idea means you can look at it objectively, evaluate it, improve it, modify it, discard what doesn't work and jettison it entirely if it's not viable.

But if you love your idea, you risk blind loyalty. You'll refuse to see its flaws. You'll move forward with your idea stubbornly, despite evidence against it, because those people criticizing your idea are just ... wrong! They simply don't understand your idea like you do.

If you can't get enough distance from your idea to accept critiques and see its limitations, you're head over heels and likely heading for disaster. And, just like in romance, an idea affair that ends badly can be tragic.

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