What to Do When You Are Overwhelmed With Ideas | Tai Goodwin
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What to Do When You Are Overwhelmed With Ideas

Question: How do you eat an elephant?

The Bright Answer: One bite at a time.

If you want to know what Brilliant Women do, keep reading.

I don’t have bright shiny object syndrome. I have bright shiny idea condition, also known as ‘Bsic’. Bsic can be pronounced like the word basic or the phase be sick – pick your preference. Both pronunciations apply:

  • Basic: Running after every idea you come up with without determining if it’s bankable or figuring out how to upgrade it to brilliant is a set up to be set back. I know: I’ve wasted lots of time, energy, and money on ideas that were good, but failed because I was too impatient to let them fully develop into brilliant gems.
  • Be Sick: That’s the feeling you’ll have when it finally dawns on you that if you had done an idea reality check, you could have avoided going off course.

No matter how you pronounce it, if you fail to manage bright shiny idea condition, you find yourself overwhelmed and consistently uncertain about which ideas to pursue. It’s like trying to eat that elephant one bite at a time. And girlfriend, that sucks, because it will take you a long time to eat that elephant and quite frankly – ain’t nobody got time for that!

If you are like me, when you first start working on an idea and crossing things off your to-do list, you’ll feel amazingly enthusiastic about your new project. You’ll get things done and feel a tremendous sense of accomplishment. Then you’ll encounter a few days when nothing goes as expected and your progress leaves you uninspired. With all the other things in your life, business, or job calling for your attention, it may become difficult to find the energy or focus to invest in your idea. Then before you know it, your enthusiasm along with your confidence; you begin to question whether you can make your ideas happen. (I’ve been there, done that, rocked the t-shirt and wore it out.)

The Bright Answer: Eat that elephant one bite at a time.

If this is the path you choose, settle in, get comfortable and start eating. It may take a while, but you’ll eventually reach the goals you set out for your idea. You might be tempted to take three or four bites at a time, but the key here is to restrain yourself and so that you can fuel yourself by the progress you make with each bite.

  • The Pros: You’ll avoid raising false hopes, and your self-confidence will remain high.
  • The Cons: At some point, you might get tired of eating that elephant. You’ll get bored and burned out and wonder why in the hell you decided to eat the elephant in the first place.
  • TRUTH: You and I will always have bright ideas – we’re wired to see possibilities and potential when other people only see pitfalls. That’s a gift we should treasure. But that doesn’t mean we don’t learn how to let go of bright so we can unleash something brilliant.

What Brilliant Women Do

Brilliant women make informed decisions and take action.

We have a way to evaluate whether an idea has the potential to become something brilliant (and bankable) or if it’s just a bright idea. Then based on our evaluation we make a decision:

  • We let the elephant go. Sometimes the best thing we can do is set the idea free. Maybe the idea wasn’t even for you but someone else.
  • We keep the elephant in our barn, which requires the proper care and feeding of your idea. So get the vision board started, the project file created, or the notebooks filled so when the time is right your idea will be ripe.
  • We have a party. You could eat that elephant a lot faster and have much less waste if you had some help. Which of your Brilliant Business Girlfriends can help you?
  • We welcome a new way to be in control. So many of our ideas never get done because we think we have to do them ourselves – we want to be in control. Consider how much faster you could eat that elephant if someone else managed the process for you.

Now there is nothing wrong with eating the elephant one bite at a time – that works for some people. But if you are like most trailblazing women with a big vision, you’ll need to move a lot faster to get things done. I don’t mean in an impatient, fly by the seat of your pants kind of way – we’ve both been there and done that, right? We simply need a way to keep the bright shiny ideas from distracting us from the work we are called to do.

My prayer: That we learn how to listen to and leverage our intuition, so we make aligned decisions about what ideas to pursue and which ones to let go of. May we handle our elephants with grace, wisdom, and confidence.

Girlfriend, It’s Your Time!

About the Author Tai Goodwin

Tai Goodwin on a mission to help 10,000 women entrepreneurs create more joy and wealth in their life and business. She's the CEO of Aligned + Bankable and creator of the Bankable Brilliance Course. An intuitive business growth strategist and teacher, her specialty is helping clients create bankable business models that allow them to increase their impact and income without burning out. Tai is a former corporate trainer with a master's degree in instructional design and over 20 years of experience designing course, training programs, and certifications. She is also the author of Girlfriend, It's Your Time and founder of Brilliant Business Girlfriends.

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10 comments
Lucretia D. Coleman says

Great article, Tai! A shining example for remembering all that glitters is not always meant for me as I manifest my life of abundance!

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Judith says

This was a helpful and wonderful article! Thanks for sharing such great tips.

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Reba Linker says

Hi Tai, I love this post – I groaned in recognition before I even started reading it! I’m flooded with ideas and, thanks to your post, I’ll look to being brilliant, rather than just bright! xox, Reba

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Andrea says

Short comment for a terrific post… ’cause I’ve got to go out to the barn and feed the elephants! My husband is helping me install a very big white board in my office. It really helps with the balance between capturing the wild things and staying focused.

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Tae Lynne says

You hit the nail on the head for me. I’m just beginning my journey & still developing my blog, website, products to sell. The ideas keep coming fast & furious and I can’t seem to manifest any of them into completion. I do have a running list with lots of folders, but now it’s time to make the vision board and just take one to completion. Thanks!

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Karen says

I suffer from this too and love your ideas. I do put one foot in front of the other to keep going but maybe sometimes my ideas are better served for someone else!

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Pamela Thompson says

Thanks for sharing your brilliance Tai! I love your strategies, particularly the one about having a party. Inviting others to create with us can be so fun and I do believe in synergy (that 3 or 4 or … heads are better than one), plus the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

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Melissa Rapoport says

Absolutely love this: “My prayer: That we learn how to listen to and leverage our intuition so we make aligned decisions about what ideas to pursue and which ones to let go of. May we handle our elephants with grace, wisdom, and confidence.” Sounds like a fantastic affirmation to me! Thanks for sharing, Tai!

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Joni says

Oh my goodness Tai I LOVE this article. I have spent the last year consumed by Bsic. I hit burnout from running in too many directions and have resolve to be undeterred by those shiny objects.

This article was a gift!
Thank you!

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Laurie Seymour says

I love this article! One bite at a time…brilliantly descriptive of a real solution. Thanks, Tai!

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