50 quotes on risktaking
50 quotes on risktaking
I am thrilled to announce that my new book, Storytelling for the Revolution, is now available on Amazon. If you are a fan of storytelling, insight, wisdom, love, choice, humor, learning, breathing, the human condition, or this blog, there is a good chance you will enjoy my book. Right now, only the paperback version is available. In a few days, the Kindle version will also be available. Click below for testimonials…
The book on Amazon
“Mitch Ditkoff knows that the real revolution comes from within and then extends outward to action. He writes with rare wisdom, depth, humor, and insight. Each story he shares has the capacity to inspire the rest of us to action that matters.” — Gail Larsen, Author Transformational Speaking: If You Want to Change the World, Tell a Better Story
“This is a powerful and important book. When we have the courage to tell our stories, we form a bond with each other that no one can defeat or overwhelm. Mitch Ditkoff makes an indisputable case for the essential role of storytelling to create change.” — Susan Page, Director, San Miguel Writers Conference and Literary Festival
“What I love about Storytelling for the Revolution is the compelling way it liberates humanity’s biggest untapped resource — our collective wisdom lurking just beneath the surface of our lives.” — Marshall Goldsmith, New York Times #1 best selling author of Triggers
“Mitch taps into the deep well of our collective wisdom and reclaims the collective narrative for the greater good. Storytelling for the Revolution is a rallying cry for people to recognize their deep meaningful connections with others and reminds us that we are not alone. It is a groundbreaking work in its simplicity and profundity. An important, seminal work for our age.” — Michael Frick, CEO, Speaking.com
“Mitch Ditkoff’s stories are beautiful and a huge encouragement for the rest of us to share our own stories with each other. This is what’s needed these days — the authentic sharing of what we know to be true, based on our own life experiences and inner wisdom. Not fake news. Real news — the news of the heart.” — Cassandra Wilson, Grammy Award Winning Jazz and Blues Singer
“Today, I read the first six of the 40 stories in Mitch Ditkoff’s Storytelling for the Revolution. Immediately, I felt my heart replace my mind and called out to my new wife that we had something delightful to read together in bed tonight. Big thanks to Mitch for helping me shift gears in the 80th year of my life. Anyone who can quiet themselves enough to pay attention to their own inner wisdom will find great value in this groundbreaking book.” — Tim Gallwey, Author of Inner Game of Tennis and the Inner Game of Work
“Through Mitch Ditkoff’s master storytelling we are welcomed under a big tent called humanity with stories that whisper truths, uniting and celebrating us all. His stories rumble deep from within, where cleverness meets humility and tragedy dances with angels. Mitch’s stories inspire reflection while the field guide provides the step-by-step guidance needed for readers to mobilize the storyteller within and lead their own personal revolution.” — Doug Stuke, Director, Sales Excellence, The Hartford Insurance Group
“Mitch’s stories have the power take us deeper into our own selves, encouraging us to pay closer attention to every aspect of our lives. Storytelling for the Revolution is an inspirational work to say the least. It is a book that has no timeline and will be here forever, changing lives, page by page.” — Sharon Jeffers, Author of Love and Destiny, Discover the Secret Language of Relationships
“Storytelling, like music, is a universal language that evokes shared emotions and connects us to each other. In Mitch Ditkoff’s second book of stories, Storytelling for the Revolution, he deftly weaves tales that give vivid insight into our hearts and emotions, helping us interpret and understand our own lives in a very personal way. This book of stories, meditations of the human soul, will positively transform your life.” — Geri Presti, CEO and President, The Cleveland Music Settlement
“Stories are all about gathering personal and collective experience and knowledge. They gain meaning when the storyteller communicates with verve and creativity. In Storytelling for the Revolution, Mitch Ditkoff beautifully fulfills this promise and offers precise prompts for accessing the wisdom tucked inside the tale”. — David Gonzalez, Award winning storyteller, poet, and arts advocate
“I loved this book and will be sharing it with sacred activists around the world. I especially loved the way the author made the connection between revolution and revelation. Highly enjoyable.” — Kurt Krueger, President, Success Systems International
Here’s a refreshing, 36-minute podcast/interview on the power of storytelling to spark big, positive changes in organizations. Especially relevant to business people engaged in Six Sigma or Lean Six Sigma projects. The interviewers are Elisabeth Swan and Tracey Roarke — two movers and shakers in the world of LeanSixSigma.
Storytelling for the Revolution
1. “I want to put a ding in the universe.” – Steve Jobs
2. “Ideas won’t keep. Something must be done about them.” – Alfred North Whitehead
3. “Intuition will tell the thinking mind where to look next.” – Jonas Salk
4. “If you have always done it that way, it is probably wrong.” – Charles Kettering
5. “Security is mostly a superstition. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” – Helen Keller
6. “If you can dream it, you can do it.” – Walt Disney
7. “You can’t solve a problem on the same level that it was created. You have to rise above it to the next level.” – Albert Einstein
8. “Do not fear mistakes. There are none.” – Miles Davis
9. “The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect, but by the play instinct arising from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the object it loves.” – Carl Jung
10. “There is only one thing stronger than all the armies of the world: and that is an idea whose time has come.” – Victor Hugo
11. “If you lose the power to laugh, you lose the power to think.”
– Clarence Darrow
12. “Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen.” – John Steinbeck
13. “To accomplish great things we must dream as well as act.” – Anatole France
14. “It is the essence of genius to make use of the simplest ideas.”
– Charles Peguy
15. “There’s no good idea that cannot be improved on.” – Michael Eisner
16. “We don’t see things as they are, we see things as we are.” – Anais Nin
17. “We don’t know a millionth of one percent about anything.”
– Thomas Edison
18. “The best vision is insight.” – Malcolm Forbes
19. “Genius is infinite painstaking.” – Michelangelo
20. “Nothing will change the fact that I cannot produce the least thing without absolute solitude.” – Goethe
21. “Neither a lofty degree of intelligence, nor imagination, nor both together, go to the making of genius. Love, Love, Love. That is the soul of genius.” – Mozart
22. “Swipe from the best, then adapt.” – Tom Peters
23. “Give me the young man who has brains enough to make a fool of himself.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
24. “You can expect no influence if you are not susceptible to influence.” – Carl Jung
25. “Whether or not you can observe a thing depends upon the theory you use. It is the theory which decides what can be observed.” – Albert Einstein
26. “Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.” – Goethe
27. “Sit, walk, or run, but don’t wobble.” – Zen proverb
28. “The greater the contrast, the greater the potential. Great energy only comes from a correspondingly great tension of opposites.” – Carl Jung
29. “We don’t know who discovered water, but we’re certain it wasn’t a fish.” – John Culkin
30. “I will act as if what I do will make a difference.” – William James
31. “There is no such thing as a long piece of work, except one that you dare not start.” – Charles Baudelaire
32. “What is now proved was once only imagined.” – William Blake
33. “Remember, a dead fish can float down a stream, but it takes a live one to swim upstream.” – W.C. Fields
34. “99 percent of success is built on failure.” – Charles Kettering
35. “If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.” – Abraham Maslow
36. “Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.” – Albert Einstein
37. “The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald
38. “The ultimate creative thinking technique is to think like God. If you’re an atheist, pretend how God would do it.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
39. “I start where the last man left off.” – Thomas Edison
40. “Never confuse motion with action.” – Ernest Hemingway
41. “The greatest invention in the world is the mind of a child.” – Thomas Edison
42. “No matter how well you perform, there’s always somebody of intelligent opinion who thinks it’s lousy.” – Sir Laurence Olivier
43. “You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
44. “I’ll play it first and tell you what it is later.” – Miles Davis
45. “The way to get good ideas is to get lots of ideas and throw the bad ones away.” – Linus Pauling
46. “Discovery is seeing what everybody else has seen, and thinking what nobody else has thought.” – Albert Szent-Gyorgi
47. “A pile of rocks ceases to be a rock pile when somebody contemplates it with the idea of a cathedral in mind.”- Antoine Saint-Exupery
48. “Without a deadline, baby, I wouldn’t do nothing.” – Duke Ellington
49. “You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take.” – Wayne Gretzky
50. “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities; in the expert’s mind there are few.” – Shunryu Suzuki
51. “Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.” – General George Patton
52. “The man with a new idea is a crank – until the idea succeeds.” – Mark Twain
53. “A problem well stated is a problem half solved.” – Charles Kettering
54. “The best thinking has been done in solitude. The worst has been done in turmoil.” – Thomas Edison
55. “Don’t be afraid to take a big step when one is indicated. You can’t cross a chasm in two small jumps.” – David Lloyd George
56. “The silly question is the first intimation of some totally new development.” – Alfred North Whitehead
57. “A man is not idle because he is absorbed in thought. There is a visible labor and there is an invisible labor.” – Victor Hugo
58. “Money never starts an idea; it is the idea that starts the money.” – William J. Cameron
59. “Systems die; instincts remain.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes
60. “You will never find the time for anything. If you want time, you must make it.” – Charles Burton
61. “Whenever anything is being accomplished, it is being done, I have learned, by a monomaniac with a mission.” – Peter Drucker
62. “One of the illusions of life is that the present hour is not the critical, decisive one.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
63. “The lightning spark of thought generated in the solitary mind awakens its likeness in another mind.” – Thomas Carlyle
64. “I failed my way to success.” – Thomas Edison
65. “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead
66. “The way to succeed is to double your failure rate.” – Thomas Watson, (Founder of IBM)
67. “Innovation opportunities do not come with the tempest but with the rustling of the breeze.” – Peter Drucker
68. “The enterprise that does not innovate ages and declines. And in a period of rapid change such as the present, the decline will be fast.” – Peter Drucker
69. “You can only be as good as you dare to be bad.” – John Barrymore
70. “No idea is so outlandish that it should not be considered.”
– Winston Churchill
71. “Conclusions arrived at through reasoning have very little or no influence in altering the course of our lives.” – Carlos Casteneda
72. “After years of telling corporate citizens to ‘trust the system,’ many companies must relearn instead to trust their people – and encourage their people to use neglected creative capacities in order to tap the most potent economic stimulus of all: idea power.” – Rosabeth Moss Kanter
73. “If the creator has a purpose in equipping us with a neck, he surely would have meant for us to stick it out.” – Arthur Koestler
74. “If you do not express your own original ideas, if you do not listen to your own being, you will have betrayed yourself.” – Rollo May
75. “Nothing is more dangerous than an idea when it is the only one you have.” – Emile Chartier
76. “There’s always an element of chance and you must be willing to live with that element. If you insist on certainty, you will paralyze yourself.” – J.P. Getty
77. “Almost all really new ideas have a certain aspect of foolishness when they are just produced.” – A.N. Whitehead
78. “Our best ideas come from clerks and stockboys.” – Sam Walton
79. “The gift of fantasy has meant more to me than my talent for absorbing positive knowledge.” – Albert Einstein
80. “Every act of creation is, first of all, an act of destruction.” – Pablo Picasso
81. “Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.” – Groucho Marx
82. “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” – Albert Einstein
83. “Genius, in truth, means little more than the faculty of perceiving in an unhabitual way.” – William James
84. “Vision is the art of seeing things invisible.” – Jonathan Swift
85. “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” – Alan Kay
86. “If you go to your grave without painting your masterpiece, it will not get painted. No one else can paint it.” – Gordon MacKenzie
87. “Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what people fear most.” – Fyodor Dostoevsky
88. “There is a vitality, a life force, that is translated to you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium, and will be lost.” – Martha Graham
89. “We have approximately 60,000 thoughts in a day. Unfortunately, 95% of them are thoughts we had the day before.” – Deepak Chopra
90. “Confusion is a word we have invented for an order that is not yet understood.” – Henry Miller
91. “I refuse to be intimidated by reality anymore. What is reality? Nothing but a collective hunch.” – Lily Tomlin
92. “Now that we have met with paradox we have some hope of making progress.” – Niels Bohr
93. “Microsoft is always two years away from failure.” – Bill Gates
94. “We’ve reached the end of incrementalism. Only those companies that are capable of creating industry revolutions will prosper in the new economy. – Gary Hamel
95. “If I have a thousand ideas and only one turns out to be good, I am satisfied.” – Alfred Noble
96. “I’ve been doing a lot of abstract painting lately, extremely abstract. No brush, no paint, no canvas, I just think about it.” – Steven Wright
97. “You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.” – Steve Jobs
98. “I am looking for a lot of people who have an infinite capacity to not know what can’t be done.” – Henry Ford
99. “You can have brilliant ideas, but if you can’t get them across, your ideas won’t get you anywhere.” – Lee Iacocca
100. “I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.” – John Cage
Talk about innovation!
“A goal without a plan is just a wish.” — Antoine de Saint Exupery
“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” — Abraham Lincoln
“Plans are of little importance, but planning is essential.” — Winston Churchill
“No matter what the work you are doing, be always ready to drop it. And plan it, so as to be able to leave it.” — Leo Tolstoy
“Pray to Allah, but tie your camel.” — The Prophet Muhammed
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” — Benjamin Franklin
“If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.” — Yogi Berra
“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining.” — John F. Kennedy
“It’s takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan.” — Eleanor Roosevelt
“Plan for what is difficult while it is easy. Do what is great while it is small.” — Sun Tzu
“A good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow.” — George S. Patton
“Many people spend more time in planning the wedding than the do the marriage.” — Zig Ziglar
“All human plans are subject to ruthless revision by Nature, or Fate, or whatever one preferred to call the powers behind the Universe.” — Arthur C. Clarke
Do you work in an organization that is trying to raise the bar for innovation, teamwork, storytelling, and leadership, but doesn’t have the budget to pay for trainings, keynotes, and workshops? Here’s an alternative — Idea Champions’ Micro-Learning for Innovators service. It all happens online. At your own pace.
The price? YOU decide on the value of our service and make us an offer. 95% of the time we go with what our prospective clients suggest. 5% of the time we decline. Interested? [email protected]
Dear Esteemed Heart of Innovation Readers:
There’s a good chance you and I have never met, talked or exchanged emails. If you are a subscriber to this blog, our only connection has been you reading my postings from time to time, 95% of which have been intended to help you discover new and better ways to think out of the box, innovate, and achieve extraordinary results. 5% of my postings are intended to give you a flavor of what Idea Champions does, can do, and has done — so YOU, assuming you have a budget, can make an informed choice about inviting us in to your organization.
This is one of those times.
Just last week, I facilitated a day-long innovation workshop for 40 members of Toyota’s Integrated Vehicle Systems department in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Suffice it to say, the session was a big hit. Here’s what the forward thinking, committed, and very handsome Nick Sitarski had to say about the experience:
“Recently I was placed in a position to lead a new department related to advanced technology. I needed to find a way to bring a new team together and further enhance our innovative spirit. As I recently had training with Mitch Ditkoff from Idea Champions, I decided to engage him in creating a unique training session for my new department. After a couple months of pre-work, our training took place last week. Throughout the session, there was a perfect blend of education and entertainment. As a result, team members we fully engaged all day. My goals of bringing a new team together and enhancing our innovative spirit were met way beyond expectation.
Want to find out more? [email protected]
What they say
1. Ask the most creative people at work for their ideas.
2. Brainstorm with a co-worker.
3. Tape record your ideas on your commute to and from work.
4. Present your challenge to a child.
5. Take your team off-site for a day.
6. Listen to your inner muse.
7. Play music in your office.
8. Go for a daily brainstorming walk.
9. Ask someone to collaborate with you on your favorite project.
10. Exercise during your lunch break.
11. Turn on a radio at random times and listen for a message.
12. Invite your customers to brainstorming sessions.
13. Think of new ways to define your challenge.
14. Remember your dreams.
15. Reward yourself for small successes.
16. Introduce odd catalysts into your daily routine.
17. Get out of the office more regularly.
18. Give yourself an unreasonable deadline.
19. Take more naps.
20. Jot down as many ideas as possible in five minutes
21. Work in cafes.
22. Transform your assumptions into “How can I?” questions.
23. Conjure up a meaningful goal that inspires you.
24. Redesign your office.
25. Take regular daydreaming breaks.
26. Dissolve turf boundaries.
27. Initiate cross-functional brainstorming sessions.
28. Arrive earlier to the office than anyone else.
29. Turn a conference room into an upbeat think tank room.
30. Read odd books that have nothing to do with your work.
31. Block off time on your calendar for creative thinking.
32. Take a shower in the middle of the day.
33. Keep an idea notebook at your desk.
34. Decorate your office with inspiring quotes and images.
35. Create a headline of the future and the story behind it.
36. Choose to be more creative.
37. Recall a time in your life when you were very creative.
38. Wander around a bookstore while thinking about your challenge.
39. Trust your instincts more.
40. Immerse yourself in your most exciting project.
41. Open a magazine and free associate off of a word or image.
42. Write down your ideas when you first wake up in the morning.
43. Ask yourself what the simplest solution is.
44. Get fast feedback from people you trust.
45. Conduct more experiments.
45. Ask yourself what the market wants or needs.
46. Ask “What’s the worst thing that could happen if I fail?”
47. Pilot your idea, even if it’s not ready.
48. Work “in the cracks” — small bursts of creative energy.
49. Incubate (sleep on it).
50. Test existing boundaries — and then test them again.
51. Schedule time with the smartest people at work.
52. Visit your customers more frequently.
53. Benchmark your competitors — then adapt their successes.
54. Enroll your boss or peers into your most fascinating project.
55. Imagine you already know the answer. What would it be?
56. Create ground rules with your team that foster new thinking.
57. Ask stupid questions. Then ask some more.
58. Challenge everything you do.
59. Give yourself a deadline — and stick to it.
60. Look for three alternatives to every solution you originate.
61. Write your ideas in a notebook and review them regularly.
62. Make connections between seemingly disconnected things.
63. Use creative thinking techniques.
64. Play with the Free the Genie cards.
65 Use similes and metaphors when describing your ideas.
66. Have more fun. Be sillier than usual.
67. Ask “How can I accomplish my goal in half the time?”
68. Take a break when you are stuck on a problem.
69. Think how your biggest hero might approach your challenge.
70. Declare Friday afternoons a “no-email zone.”
71. Ask three people how they would improve your idea.
72. Create a wall of images that inspires you.
73. Do more of what already helps you be creative off the job.
74. Laugh more, worry less.
75. Remember your dreams — then write them down.
76. Ask impossible questions.
77. Eliminate all unnecessary bureaucracy and admin tasks.
78. Create a compelling vision of what you want to accomplish.
79. Work on hottest project every day, even if only 5 minutes.
80. Do whatever is necessary to create a sense of urgency.
81. Go for a walk anytime you’re stuck.
82. Meditate or do relaxation exercises.
83. Take more breaks.
84. Go out for lunch with your team more often.
85. Eat lunch with a different person each day.
86. Ask for forgiveness, not permission.
87. Invite an outside facilitator to lead a brainstorming session.
88. Take more risks outside of the office (i.e. surf, ski, box etc.)
89. Ask for help when you need it.
90. Know that it is possible to make a difference.
91. Find a mentor.
92. Acknowledge all your successes at the end of each day.
93. Create an “idea piggy bank” and make deposits daily.
94. Have shorter meetings.
95. Try the techniques in Awake at the Wheel
96. Don’t listen to or watch the news for 24 hours.
97. Make drawings of your ideas.
98. Bring your project or challenge to mind before going to bed.
99. Divide your idea into component parts. Then rethink each part.
100. Post this list near your desk and read it daily.
Feel The Flow of Ideas
Fluency of thought is one of the cornerstones of creativity. It is about generating ideas without evaluating them. This allows one idea to become the springboard for another, and as this process starts to flow naturally, a wealth of ideas is generated. Practice your thinking fluency daily.
Don’t criticise any idea that comes to mind – in fact, see what crazy ideas you can come up with!
As your mind develops in fluency, you’ll be astounded at the number of ideas you can create.
Reject quick fixes (going for the first workable solutions that come to mind). Keep on allowing yourself enough time to think of other solutions or angles for approaching the situation.
In your daily Mind Fluency Exercises, keep these words where you can see them:
AHA! Satori! Eureka! I’ve got an idea!
The art of thinking new thoughts is a truly creative art. Many ideas don’t equal good ideas, but there is a strong connection. Use fluency to arrive at truly original thinking.
For years it was erroneously reported that Charles H Duell, commissioner of the United States Patent Office, said in 1899, “Everything that can be invented has been invented.” We know that even today this is nonsense. We are not all inventors, but we are all capable of new and original thinking.
You may be the person to save the world from global warming, or you may not. The important thing to do is to have original thoughts daily. Your idea need not be new to the world – it only matters that it’s novel to your thinking. Flex your originality muscles:
See Beyond the Ordinary
Make mental leaps.
Forget what you know.
Resist obvious responses.
Have the courage to venture into the unusual.
Dig deeper for creative energy.
Don’t reproduce, rather produce.
Don’t conform, reform.
Resist finding fault because others do.
“The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved by sceptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities. We need men and women who can dream of things that never were.” John F Kennedy
Puff Up Your Idea
So, you’ve had the most amazing idea… Sorry, but no one can use it. You need to elaborate on it to make it useful.
“Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.” – Winston Churchill
Is the instant world we’re living in sabotaging your perseverance? Have you ever had a great idea or a way to solve an office issue, and then someone else goes ahead and does it? And then gets the credit for it?
To change a good idea into a brilliant one, we need to make the effort and elaborate. Spend some time on your good ideas, develop them and elaborate on them.
If inventor Thomas Edison did not persevere, passionately elaborating his ideas, how much poorer the world would be. He held 1093 patents to his name in the USA alone!
“Genius is 1%| inspiration and 99% perspiration.” -Thomas Edison
Interestingly, Edison’s inventions were mostly improvements on existing products. Yes, building upon existing ideas is a legitimate form of genius and creativity. For instance, when we think about watches we think about Switzerland. Yet, it’s Japan that sells the most watches. The Japanese elaborated and went digital.
All of us need to improve our creative thinking abilities all the time. If you’d like to excel in your career or business or be a more creative leader, teacher or parent, register to attend the ACRE International Creativity Conference today! It takes place in October at Klein-Kariba outside Bela-Bela, South Africa. Click here to inquire about registration.
The post Taking You Beyond: Elements of Creativity (Part 1) appeared first on Kobus Neethling Institute.