Insanity is often defined as doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results. And for good reason. If one plan of action fails to work we should do something else, even if it seems radical at the time. Unfortunately, we’re all creatures of habit. We love the familiar; we’re at ease with the tried and true. When you get into a comfortable routine, it’s tempting to stick with it and hope the situation will improve.
The better approach in to think outside the box. Sometimes the best, most successful ideas come completely out of left field. Don’t be afraid of them. Welcome them.
There are two aspects to consider here:
It could be an idea only a few steps away from the predictable that breaks up a frustrating logjam. Or it might be a crazy notion that knocks your socks off on its way to innovation and success.
I do a lot of thinking while riding my mountain bike, swimming, or running. There’s something about the process of pushing myself physically that clears my brain and helps me think in new directions. Those are the times when I think outside the box and look for examples of other people who do the same. Searching for answers in unlikely places is always interesting, and sometimes revolutionary.
One of the greatest outside-the-box thinkers of our time began with the idea that computers ought to be available to everybody. Back in the 1970s, computers were big, expensive machines that spoke some alien language. Steve Jobs didn’t do market research or study the business plans of the established computer companies. He took a radical jump outside the box to develop a comparatively tiny, simple computer that soon revolutionized the world we live in.
The potential of thinking outside the box is unlimited, yet the initial barriers to it can be tough to break down. But if you believe in the objective, looking for fresh ways to achieve it will be fun.
Like what you hear? Pick up a copy of Every Gift Matters: How Your Passion Can Change the World, now available at Amazon.