Ideation Process Episode Two: Actualization
Aha into action.
Actualization. Having the idea is only part of the equation. As stated previously, we get ideas all the time. We capture an idea, and we then step into a tension. Tension between the thought of it and then how it fits into what we actually have going on in our life.
And if I’m being real, I am challenged what to write. Not because the topic is difficult to understand, it’s how it needs to next take shape. How similar is that feeling when we have the light bulb moment – energized and inspired – and then laying out how to approach applying it with everything else going on.
Where does the idea fit?
When we reach this moment, it really does take some significant time to figure out how this plays out in our day-to-day.
Obviously, something got triggered because of a need, gap, or opportunity. It is linked to an aspect of your life. Maybe it’s a new coaching tactic. Or a way to increase connection when communicating with others. Could be a health and wellness activity to begin putting into action. Maybe it’s simple, maybe it’s complex. And maybe it requires some practice. Perhaps it will require time to get going.
The idea came. It flowered as a thought or suggestion as to a possible course of actualization with a particular aim or purpose. Now, it becomes a “scheduling” dilemma. With a potentially, already jam-backed day, the mental push-back may creep in, challenging the idea even before it begins to take physical shape.
How will I fit something obviously important that I haven’t crafted as second nature behavior into a practical, immediate, next action given my current scene?
Aspiration into Visualization.
I recently shared some considerations with a group of young leaders about creating change. Call it a bit of checklist as one visualizes transforming a thought into action.
Start with your motive. Why are you doing this? What’s the purpose? What need is this fulfilling? Know this without question. You have to believe this idea is being built on purpose, for purpose. Bottom line, if you know your why, you’ll figure out the way.
Know yourself. With a willing, honest, open and vulnerable heart and head, identify your strengths and opportunities. What will give you energy and what will trip you up? Make a list – mental or physical – and clarify your skillset and mindset.
Gather up support and resources. What will you need to make this real? Will you need further instruction, training and practice to figure out the best practices? Who might provide insight and guidance?
Figure out your flow state and your body rhythm. Know the best times to engage in this idea. When are you the most productive? When does this make the most sense given other requirements and priorities? Leveraging that time is where you will benefit the most with your effort as you engage your skillset and mindset.
As odd as this may sound, commit ahead of time to the potential failures and successes. Be okay with not getting it right before getting it right. Accept a “progress, not perfection” state of mind. Also, I have found that ideas are not total failures or successes…they usually entail varying degrees of both.
Visualization into Actualization.
Be, Do, Have.
I have always stated this as the last thing before going into action. This is all mindset.
Decide what you want to be. This is about wanting to actually be the person that this idea inspires. Then, identify what you need to actually do to achieve actualization. And lastly, make very clear what you will actually have as a result of doing it. It’s a process of believing it as you see it in action and outcome.
Ideas are thoughts. The process of making them into actions requires belief. Having that, wholeheartedly and intentionally, will move us into behavior. That comes next.
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