For the umpteenth time, a client shared his story about being in a meeting, having an idea and not sharing it outloud. His point, of course, was that twenty minutes later, a co-worker voiced that same idea and everyone applauded!
Do you find yourself in meetings thinking a great idea but holding it back because you haven’t thought it through? And does someone else inevitably share that idea and get the credit for creative thinking?
If so, it is time to become an “outloud thinker.” An outloud thinker is someone who grabs a kernel of an idea and throws it out into the group to think it through in front of others. Here are some ideas to help you become someone who can think outloud:
- Let go of having to share only ideas that are perfected and polished. Realize that ideas can also be developed with group support and contribution. Like babies, they never come out of the womb fully matured.
- Be willing for ideas to act like sparks off of which others can react. They can be a place to begin and not to end.
- Preface your idea with a disclaimer. Like “Hey, I just thought of something. Let me throw it out and see if you think it has value.” Your disclaimer allows you to say that your idea is not fully developed, asks permission to think it out in front of the group and makes you feel safe to bring out an idea that may or may not be valuable.
- Couch your idea tentatively. “What about this idea for starters?” This allows others to contribute more easily than if you assert your idea as definitive.
- Be willing to let go if your idea is not workable. Be able to shake it off and applaud yourself for the courage to contribute.
Thoughts are energy forms that can be passed from mind to mind telepathically. When an idea’s time has come, it will show up in the collective mind. If you have an idea, chances are someone else has it too. If you don’t own it, someone else will.
If you are good at catching ideas, it is really important that you become an outloud thinker. Become the one who has crazy ideas. Some of them will be duds, some will be brilliant!
I love to help people share their ideas, insights and expertise confidently. If you think I might be the one help you shine as an outloud thinker, check out the possibilities for coaching, classes or workshops at www.self-expression.com