Idea Time

If you really, really wanted to ensure that something happened on a particular day, what would you do? Would you simply try really hard to remember to do it? Would you write it on a Post-it and hope that you’d see it at some point that day?

No, of course not. You would put it on your calendar.

The things that are important to us get coveted space in our schedules. We block time for them, because it’s the best way to ensure that they are accomplished.

Yet when it comes to idea generation, we somehow believe that it will simply happen at some point when we least expect it. We hold these mythical ideals of “eureka moments” as uncontrollable, spontaneous strokes of luck. This is untrue. We can increase the likelihood of experiencing them more often.

How? By scheduling time for them. By dedicating blocks on the calendar for thinking about problems and sparking ideas for them. I will often schedule an hour on the calendar with the title “XYZ Training Idea,” or “Chapter 21,” or something similar. These are placeholders for time to think about and generate ideas for important work I’m account- able for accomplishing.

If it’s critical, it goes on your calendar. Block a bit of time today (or this week) to work on ideas for a project that’s still unresolved. You’ll be surprised at how often creativity shows up right on time when you plan for it.

Don’t expect ideas to happen in the cracks and crevices of life.


Which project has open loops that you need to plan time to close? Do it today.

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