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Isaac Asimov: How to Never Run Out of Ideas Again

Don’t Fight the Stuck

Getting stuck is normal. It’s our reaction to it that really matters.

Step aside, find other projects and actively ignore the thing that got you stuck. By doing this, your subconscious creates space for ideas to grow.

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Isaac Asimov: How to Never Run Out of Ideas Again

Isaac Asimov: How to Never Run Out of Ideas Again

https://medium.com/personal-growth/isaac-asimov-how-to-never-run-out-of-ideas-again-b7bf8e09cc91

medium.com

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Key Ideas

Never Stop Learning

Read a lot and follow your curiosity. You should never stop investing in yourself.

To have good ideas, we need to consume good ideas too. Your formal education isn’t the end. If anything, it’s the beginning.

Don’t Fight the Stuck

Getting stuck is normal. It’s our reaction to it that really matters.

Step aside, find other projects and actively ignore the thing that got you stuck. By doing this, your subconscious creates space for ideas to grow.

The Fear of Rejection

It transforms us into “perfectionists”. And that is a form of safety.

We all have ideas and we should practice not rejecting them before giving them a chance.

"Don’t try to paint the Mona Lisa on round one. Lower your standards. Make a test product, a temporary sketch or a rough draft."

"Don’t try to paint the Mona Lisa on round one. Lower your standards. Make a test product, a temporary sketch or a rough draft."

True Confidence

It's about pushing boundaries, failing miserably, and having the strength to stand back up again.

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Output comes from input

If you want to have a lot of good ideas, you need to expose yourself to good ideas.

This means reading books, having conversations with interesting people, seeking out new experiences,...

Have a capture mechanism

Creative ideas often come to you when you’re not deliberately trying to solve a problem, when your mind is relaxed.

That's why your creative process must include a system to capture ideas when you have them, so you can work on them later. The simplest mechanism is simply to have a list where you keep ideas.

Incubate your ideas

Regularly review your ideas lists. Incubation helps because just as a spontaneous connection can generate an idea, an incubated idea can spontaneously mature into a plan of action if you take care of it.

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The Perfect Day

Life is always more out of our control than we would prefer it to be. Even with the most meticulous planning, the perfect day only shows up now and then.

If we were to have a perfect day ever...

The Quest for Uniformity

Similar to the desire for the perfect day, an ideal life can mean enforcing a rigid uniformity that does more harm than good.

Chasing utopian dreams never takes us exactly where we want to go, because ideas change, people change, and new technologies develop.

Chasing A Perfect Paradise

Dictators from history had an ideal world in mind that would last. But their dreams were never realized, and instead left catastrophic destruction behind.

We are unable to plan a perfect life without also fully understanding the complexity of life. Things we think we want now might be different from what we want in the near future.

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Creative Thinking is a habit

Creative people are creative, not as a result of any particular inborn trait, rather, but rather through an attitude toward life. They habitually respond to problems in fresh and novel ways...

3 basic factors
  • opportunities to engage in it, 
  • encouragement to go after such opportunities, 
  • and rewards for doing so.

Creativity is no different from any other habit, good or bad.

Creative people do this habitually
  • Look for ways to see problems that other people don’t.
  • Take risks that other people are afraid to take.
  • Have the courage to defy the crowd and to stand up for their own beliefs.
  • Seek to overcome obstacles and challenges to their views that other people give in to.

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