Have you ever worked with someone who always seems to have bright ideas?

Maybe that person is you yourself.

I mean, don’t you love it when you hear someone express a bright idea? You can almost literally see the hot, white light bulb flashing above their head as they’re speaking.

Don’t you especially love it when you get a bright idea? You can almost feel that light bulb beaming with pride over your own head. You probably shouldn’t be prideful about it, but you are.

“Bright ideas” are fantastic. We don’t have to look that term up in the dictionary. Everybody knows one when they hear it. They know it when they see it. Even kids – perhaps especially kids – can spot bright ideas from a mile away.

Bright ideas give us life. They give us renewed vigor and inspiration. Bright ideas are inspiration. Bright ideas help us to carry on when we’re weary. They strengthen us when we’re weak.

The greatest thing about bright ideas, I think, is the fact that they’re bright. There’s no darkness in a bright idea. It’s all about light and possibilities. When you’ve got a bright idea, suddenly, you feel like you can take flight and soar like an eagle.

But there is a dark side. Let’s go there, shall we?

I once worked with a guy who often came up with bright ideas. We’d be sitting in the office and he’d stand up and announce (not say, but announce) to everyone …

“Hey! I think we should (blank) …”

You can fill in the blank. I’m sure you’ve met people like this guy. His ideas were indeed often really good. But more often than not, they would fall apart. Here’s why …

Whenever this guy would say, “…we should…” what he actually meant was, “…YOU should…” He’d never want to roll up his sleeves and DO the actual work involved to support HIS bright idea. It’s not like he was our boss. He was not anyone’s boss.

Have you ever met anyone like him? I know … I know. Of course you have. We all have.

I know another guy who often expresses bright ideas. In fact, his ideas are brighter than bright. They’re brilliant. Problem is … this guy never hangs around long enough to help implement his ideas.

He always throws out his brilliant bomb and flees. It’s literally a psychological bomb. I always feel like I’m dealing with a sniper when I chat with this guy. I mean that in a good way, but he’s just never willing to roll up his sleeves to support his theories. His bright ideas are always for someone else.

In short, these guys never put their elbow grease where their mouths are.

Don’t you just love inspiration? Inspiration always carries this message ...

When God inspires us, the message is for US not someone else. It’s God’s way of telling US to get busy, not to just announce our bright idea and expect someone else to do ALL of the work. The heavy lifting is meant for US … along with help from others.

I actually got the “bright idea” to write this essay when I woke up this morning. Right at that moment, I knew that I was going to have to sit down here with you, literally roll up my sleeves and start typing.

I knew that I was, in fact, the one who’d have to do the work. This is too important to shove off onto someone else. Since it was my idea, I am taking the lead on this. Essays don’t write themselves. They need a writer, someone to channel them into existence.

Bright ideas definitely have bright sides and dark sides. The bright sides usually involve “win-win” scenarios while the dark sides are often about our own selfish motives. As usual, EGO.

When we get a bright idea that we expect someone else to carry out, we’re telling the world that while we think we’re brilliant for coming up with the idea, we don’t believe enough in ourselves to actually commit to the work involved to bring our idea into reality. We want someone else to pay the price if the idea fails … and yet we’ll surely claim credit when and if it succeeds.

Of course, it could also be that we’re just plain lazy. We don’t want to walk the long haul in the trenches. Let someone else to that.

However, let me just say here that I’m not talking about ideas that come from our supervisors. If our bosses at work have a bright idea that they want us to carry out … well, that’s just part of the job. That should be expected. Yet I must say that I’ve actually had bosses who’ve expressed bright ideas and then they’ve rolled up their sleeves and got to work on them … expecting everyone to pitch in. You’ve gotta respect that … even if you don’t love the idea.

I don’t know. I guess I’ve just seen and heard too many people express their bright ideas, assess the mood of the room and then run for cover. It just seems so cowardly to me.

This has taught me to think first before expressing what I believe is a bright idea. I never announce “my bright ideas” without also showing a great willingness to do the actual work involved.

In short, if you’ve got a bright idea, it would be ideal if you’ve also got the gravitas to back it up. No one says you have to do it alone, but you should be willing and ready to roll up your sleeves.

That’s what I love about artists. Artists put their hands and paintbrushes where their canvas sits. When they get bright ideas, they get busy. They bring their masterpieces into fruition ... and they don’t expect someone else to do the work. This is what makes them “artists.”

You know, our world is teeming with people with bright ideas. There’s simply no shortage of brilliant people or bright ideas. The problem – as usual – is getting everyone on the same page.

Do you have a bright idea?

Sure, I’ll listen. But guess what? 




The Power of Yes