What’s the Gestation Period for Your Ideas?

What's the Gestation Period for Your Ideas?Being pregnant isn’t limited to one’s child bearing years!

I woke up this morning in the mood to give birth. Not to a human baby, of course — those years are long gone — but to the actualization of an idea I’ve been stewing about for many months.

Last year, I started thinking seriously about creating online courses about capital campaign fundraising. If I am an expert anything, that’s it. I’ve written books on capital campaign fundraising. I’ve lectured and given workshops. And in my day job, I coach people about their campaigns. But so far, I haven’t created any on-line courses.

I’ve signed up for a bunch of online courses given by other people to see what they’re like. I’ve taken some baby steps into trying out some technology like screen casting. But mainly I’ve been letting the idea… well… gestate.

To the great frustration of the people I’m working with, I’ve been slow to move ahead. For no particular reason except that the gestation period for this idea wasn’t over yet. The idea wasn’t fully enough formed!

When you’ve got an idea about a project that’s brewing, sometimes you’ve just got to wait. And just like being pregnant with a baby, you can get ready for it, but you’ve got to be patient until it’s ready to come out. But when your idea is ready to be birthed, you won’t be able to hold it back any more. Your anxiety about whether it’s worthy will be overwhelmed by the desire to get it out into the world.

Mind you, some ideas never get to that state. They abort or miscarry. That’s one of the values of a gestation period. The ideas sort themselves into worthy and unworthy. But those that are worthy grow and shift and change until they are good and ready.

For me, anyway, it’s a familiar and natural and sometimes frustrating process. You too?

And now, I think I’ll get to work creating my first online capital campaign course. The idea is ready and so am I. I just hope the labor isn’t too long and the resulting course is worth the wait!

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Think About Your Idea Gestation Process

Have you ever “gestated” and then given birth to an idea? Is one taking form inside of you now? Can you describe it or give it a name? Are you frustrated by your inability to move it along faster? Is there a deadline looming that’ll push it out soon?

Please share your experiences of gestating ideas as they grow into full fledged projects. How do you know when they’re ready to emerge? Do you prefer deadlines or are you happy with a more natural cycle?