Goshen News, Goshen, IN


February 24, 2013

WHOLE FAMILY: Bright-idea people sometimes can’t take charge

Bright ideas! Ever known someone who seems to have them all the time? He or she is the kind of person serially declaring, “You should try this” or “That would make a good project” or, dreamily, “It’d be neat if we did this.”

To these dreamers, the world is a plush, colorful and abundant garden teeming with delicious ingredients for exotic or nutritious or beautiful meals or tinctures or pretties to be made. “Oh, the possibilities” they breathe as they survey the proverbial land.

That, friends, is me.

For the record, I believe many idea people are simply vibrant thinkers, synthesizers if you will. I’m convinced there is, truly, nothing new under the sun and thus no absolutely original idea. In fact, you won’t hear me use the word “create” for most things we humans do.

Instead, people like me have a knack for pulling pieces together, for *fashioning* or *assembling* concepts or projects or initiatives or goals. Ever known someone who sees three ingredients in the fridge and sees a gourmet meal? Yeah, I don’t do it with food – I prefer to avoid the kitchen most days – but I do it in life in general quite often.

There are so many things we all could do.

And I am positive I drive people nuts, especially those closest to me. I see friends visibly stiffen sometimes, like they’re thinking, “Here she goes again. I feel a project coming on. Ech. We’re just having coffee!”

It’s to the point I recite a short intro, sort of a “get-ready” preface with an “I’m-just-thinking-out-loud” clause, before I plop a new one on my tolerant and laid-back husband who, by covenant marriage, is required to endure me and my ideas.

He listens, but warily. That’s because most of my ideas, in one way or another, mean work for him. I dream them up; he, often, carries them out.

And therein lies problem No. 1 with idea people. They’re usually good thinkers, visionaries even, but they don’t always deliver when it comes to implementing their brilliant concepts. There’s a colossal difference between dreaming up a project and having the know-how or ability to carry it out.

I made a related mistake recently — plowed ahead with a really good idea without completing the due diligence necessary to have a plan that would, actually, work. It was such a good idea and we had so much excitement about it, I figured it would all just fall together. No.

I plowed, then, right into a wall, crashing others with me. Some were hurt, even, painfully reminding me it’s not enough to have a good idea with good intentions. You have to know what to do with your stuff.

Clearly, I don’t want to make that mistake again – though I’ll need room to make other mistakes, I’m sure.

So I’ve been thinking.

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Goshen City Council member Dixie Robinson is asking residents to make an effort to clean up their yards this spring. The city’s Dial-A-Truck program is available to haul trash away. Do you think there are more unsightly properties in Goshen this year than five years ago?

Yes. I have noticed more problem properties
No. I have not noticed more problems
I think the problems are about the same as always
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