How do we Stir Up New Ideas? Friday’s Creatively Entrepreneurial Question

Friday’s Creatively Entrepreneurial Question (see bottom of post for prizes)

It came to me the other evening, when I was performing a quick patent search on Google Patents.  You see, back in the early 2000’s, after several years of owning a cell phone, and noticing that, whether it be for safety, or pure convenience, that everyone would be owning a cell phone within a matter of years, an idea came to me.  My idea seemed so obvious to me that I never acted upon it, though I did believe it was a bit of a stroke of genius.  I was a poor college kid anyhow, how could I even afford to go through the patent process and get a prototype built?  (go to bottom of post if you want to see my idea)

What do you do to get YOUR ideas?

Big Ideas are as Essential to the World as the Sun. Photo Credit

Anyhow, the results of my patent search (FYI you should always do this before hiring someone to do an official search) were that my idea had been patented in 2010.  Doh!  If I’d only acted sooner.  In any case, my reaction was, “Well, now I need to come up with a new idea.  Wait, how do I come up with a new idea?”  It’s not that easy, right?

Friday’s question is simple, yet important to innovation, small business, employment, and the like.  The question is:

What do we do to help stir new ideas?  

My friends over at Live to Write, Write to Live have an entire category of blog posts dedicated to drawing inspiration.

Myself, I don’t know how to come up with that next invention.  That’s why I ask you, the readers!  However, here are some of the things I do, which often generate ideas, be they for music, new businesses, inventions, books I’d like to write, what-have-you.

R.G. Riles’ Creativity Creating Activities (in no particular order):

1.  Exercise or go for a run.

I can’t tell you how many times I get done at the gym, or get done running, and I have not only been invigorated, but I have a new idea that I am ultra-excited about.  Just goes to show you, you should always have pen and paper with you, even when working out.  I believe the endorphins you create by working out inspire creativity, but I’m no neuroscientist.

2.  Take a solitary road trip.

How many times have you thought of something in the car and said to yourself, “I wish I could write this down right now.  Should I pull over and write it down?  Well, this idea is so good, I won’t forget it!”  You know how that story ends, of course.

3.  Crank up the music while you’re in the shower or the bath.

I admit it.  I sing at the top of my lungs and, let me tell ya, the record labels don’t know what they’re missing!  Ha!  Again, here’s another case where I believe that endorphins are helping to kick-start the creative caverns of our mind.

4.  Just grab a cup of coffee and go people watch somewhere.

We don’t get out as much as we used to.  No, not just myself and Mrs. Riles… all of us, as a culture.  Getting out and experiencing the world helps us find problems to solve and genuinely helps our innovative beings within come to the surface!

Okay, that’s it from me today.  Now it’s time to hear from you.  This contest is new, so let me tell you how it works.

Between now and Thursday of the following week, you comment your answers, then on next Friday’s Creatively Entrepreneurial Question post, I put some of my favorite answers up in a pole for you to vote throughout the following week.  The winner each week will be entered into a drawing, to occur on July 4, 2013, where I will be giving away some glamorous prizes!

One lucky winner will be shipped an iPad!

Two lucky winners will be shipped an iPod Touch.

The first entrant into the drawing will be revealed 2 weeks from today, or July 13, 2012 (FRIDAY THE 13TH!?! YIKES!).  Remember, unless there are an inordinate number of ties, this means the winners will have roughly at least a 3 in 50 chance of winning

Happy Friday everyone!!!

-R.G. Riles

 PS – In case you were wondering, here is the idea that I had and was going to attempt to patent before discovering it had been patented in 2010 by someone else!  It’s basically a 2nd small batter for every cell phone, that is always charged first, and only used to make emergency calls.  Your phone could be “dead” but if there were an emergency, you could flip a switch or hit a button or code on your phone, which would turn the phone on.  If you don’t dial 911 within 15 seconds, the phone shuts off again.  For folks who are abducted, you could even punch a code into the phone and then the phone would then look like it was off, but would act as a GPS device so that your position could be tracked.

My Invention - Too Late!!!

A lesson for all. Act on your ideas before someone else does!



  1. FYI folks, all I’m looking for is for you to leave a note that says what you do when you’re seeking inspiration. I had one person mistake my intent. He thought I was looking for invention ideas. Note the case! I genuinely want to hear what YOU do when you need to brainstorm! Thanks. Looking forward to this week’s inaugural entries!!!

  2. I like to think some of the most creative things that have been created, how they work and when they worked. And then it gets you into kind of a creative state and no idea seems too impossible.

  3. […] folks, there was only one comment on last week’s Creatively Entrepreneurial post.  Therefore, Nate Wells of Idaho is the only entrant thus far, in the drawing for the iPad […]

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