But I didn't do anything

by rrm
6 replies
Maybe there really is nothing new under the Sun. Maybe things we've thought of, somebody else has thought of them.

We all have ideas that are original, or at least original to us. So we think about the money we could make if we market the idea. In our minds we go from concept to dreams about the lifestyle of the rich and famous and we leave out all the middle parts. Did we do anything about it?

A long time ago I saw on the news a story about a mid-western U.S. city in the grip of a bad ice storm. People couldn't walk on the sidewalks for all the ice. I had a thought. Easy solution and it came to me instantly. Why in the world would the town not install some kind of heated pipe system underneath where people need to walk and the ice would melt? Seemed simple enough. Technically wouldn't be hard to do. But I didn't do anything about my idea. I few years later I read about a city that had installed such a system under sidewalks that made navigation much safer for pedestrians during the winter months.

After ebay became a household word I thought (before I had ever heard of the concept) that I could actually sell other people's stuff and make money off that. (Yeah, I know, everybody and his sister thought of the same thing.) I think they now call it a consignment business or some such thing. But I didn't do anything. Now, lots of people make good money doing just that.

A long time ago I was playing a game of tic-tac-toe. I thought about how I could make it more interesting. I came up with a 3-dimensional form and made a multi-grid form of the game on paper. Really brought it up to the next level. I gave myself a brownie point for coming up with a novel (at least to me) twist on an old game. Then I thought, no, nobody would pay money for 3-d tic-tac-toe. I am just a peon and I have no idea how to market the stuff. So I didn't do anything about it. Years later others were profiting off a 3-D version of it, similar to what I had imagined (and done on paper) years before.

Where would I be today if I had done something with any idea I had, original or not? Some people step out and make it big. Maybe they failed and fell hard. Maybe they failed a lot. But at least they put hands and feet to the thought.

The world is full of people with ideas and dreams and hope. A dime will buy you boatload of them. But it seems that most of us stop where it all started: in our minds.

Maybe there really is nothing new under the Sun. Maybe things we've thought of, somebody else has thought of them. Maybe what we do somebody else is already doing it. So what?

I can't say that I have had one original idea about how to make money on the internet. Nothing I have thought of has not been done before. Being first can have its own glory. But I think for me I will walk the road more traveled and learn from those who already been there and done that and learn from them. Stand on their shoulders, infuse something unique into the mix, DO something about it and see what happens.

Ron
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
    Ron,

    Okay. Ya got me.

    I was sure this was going to be another of those worthless, whiny, "I got banned from AdSense and all my YouTube videos got deleted and EzineArticles.com refused my plagiarized copies of spun garbage and I flunked my audition for 'Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader,' all before noon" threads.

    It was a nice surprise to find this bit of useful common sense behind that headline.


    Paul
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    Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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    • Profile picture of the author ShaneGorry
      Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

      Ron,

      Okay. Ya got me.

      I was sure this was going to be another of those worthless, whiny, "I got banned from AdSense and all my YouTube videos got deleted and EzineArticles.com refused my plagiarized copies of spun garbage and I flunked my audition for 'Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader,' all before noon" threads.

      It was a nice surprise to find this bit of useful common sense behind that headline.


      Paul
      lol Yer you got me too. And I can relate a lot to the message in the OP. That's why I've been in serious production mode of late. Tired of feeling that coulda shoulda woulda feeling.
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      • Profile picture of the author Mo Sheikh
        Great post Ron! I know I've failed to take action on ideas plenty of times. I think a lot of times the predominant reasons for inaction are fear of failing, not knowing where to start, or feeling like you can't compete with others who are already implementing your idea.

        An idea is nothing without focused, committed action. Even if someone else is already doing it, all you really have to do is do it a little bit better! Rarely are there any life-altering brilliant ideas that impact billions of people (think Facebook), but rather the majority of big businesses started off by doing one thing better than their competitors.

        Its too bad most people are too afraid of failing that they never take action. But that's what separates the successful people from the rest of the masses.
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        • Profile picture of the author Genycis
          Originally Posted by Mo Sheikh View Post


          An idea is nothing without focused, committed action. Even if someone else is already doing it, all you really have to do is do it a little bit better! Rarely are there any life-altering brilliant ideas that impact billions of people (think Facebook), but rather the majority of big businesses started off by doing one thing better than their competitors.

          Its too bad most people are too afraid of failing that they never take action. But that's what separates the successful people from the rest of the masses.

          Exactly Mo! And more times than not, you'll be able to find an area that you can work on and even if someone's doing it, you can do it better and as a result, succeed and beat the competition to such a point that they're contacting you now to work with you on some kind of mutual proposal for both of you to prosper.

          Gotta put things into action when your mind is telling you to... all it takes is starting what you have in mind, and usually, if your heart is in that thought and project, following it through won't be nearly as hard.
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          Genycis
          -- Absorbing & implementing. Need hip hop beats for your business needs? Hit me up!
          -- Posting my experiences and so forth with my own blog.
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  • Profile picture of the author Genycis
    Pretty deep post indeed. And it's true, a lot of people think of a lot of ideas or spins or twists on other ideas that could make companies extra money, or save them extra money... and out of fear that they will either not be heard or taken seriously, or need tons of money to invest in it, they sit on their hands and minds and do nothing but close their eyes and dream dreams.

    I felt somewhat the way you did when I started one of my sites. I used to say to myself... "what if there is a website that sells sounds to music producers individually?" and said, nah, that wouldn't float. Some time later, I found myself taking the plunge anyway, and a couple of years later, I can happily say that I've made some money off of my idea, my sound creations, and have made some nice repeated customer relationships as well.

    If you have something solid that you know has a great shot of being something, look it up and see if it's been done yet, and if not, look into how you can put it into action. You never know what success you can make from your own thoughts.
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    Genycis
    -- Absorbing & implementing. Need hip hop beats for your business needs? Hit me up!
    -- Posting my experiences and so forth with my own blog.
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