Tools to help you on your journey to great new ideas.
This tool is used in the Production step of the How part of the process and is taken from the book The Small Business Ideas Guide.
Julia Cameron wrote a classic book called ‘The Artists Way’ in which the basis of this method is described. I have adapted her practice to work more effectively as part of the new ideas process.
The technique is applied over two days and needs a small amount of simple preparation. Plan your time so that on the first day you commit to three clear periods of ten minutes each. On the second day you will need a 45 minute period when you will not be interrupted.
On day one, write your Confrontation question clearly on a sheet of paper and put it where you can see it. Take a pad and pen and then just write about the subject of your question. Take a note of the time that you start and don’t stop for at least ten minutes.
Keep writing whether the words make sense or not, remind yourself of your question when you feel it is relevant, but don’t stop writing. Don’t go back and read what you have written, don’t worry about spelling or grammar or punctuation; don’t worry about being neat, repeating yourself or whether anybody else can read it. Just get words on the page.
Don’t be concerned if what you write is apparently totally disconnected to the question. There may be other thoughts at the front of your mind that you have to get out of the way first. Don’t just sit and think, gently remind yourself of your question and write.
Write using pen and paper not a computer because most word processing packages will interrupt you with corrections. Also, if you are looking at your computer screen you are more likely to be distracted by other things which appear through that electronic window. Move away from your screen, if possible into a different room, or into your car, or a park or a coffee shop.
Without reading what you wrote previously, repeat the process two more times in the same day, with at least three hours between each session. Put the three passages away safely and do not look at them again on the first day.
On the second day take out your writing and read through it all slowly, then write for a further ten minutes using the same rules as on day one.
The last step of the process is to read carefully what you have just written. The words that you put on paper in that final ten minutes of writing are where the answers to your question will be found.