Changing the world is hard work. It requires strength of mind and innovative thinking. Being keenly aware of when you are mashing your passion with an advanced thinking strategy, is at the heart activating your Hyper-Cool Super Power. So, what is a Hyper Cool Super Power you might ask? Simply put, it is when you are in touch with your skills, talents, and passions to blend them with advanced thinking strategies.
We know many people that have the ability to harness their passion into a hyper-cool super power. An example are two friends, Alvy Ray Smith and Ed Catmull who blended their passion for art, film and computer science to start the company we all know and love, Pixar. Apple Computer’s Steve Jobs was so impressed with their imagination and vision for the future of computer graphics, that he gave them $10 million to form the company Pixar. Today, Pixar is worth $7.4 billion with a catalogue of films like, Finding Nemo, Toy Story, Monsters Inc., The Incredibles, Cars, Wall-E, A Bugs Life, Brave, and UP, just to name a few.
Using his passion for sports and his ability to think flexibly (thinking out the box) to solve problems, Kevin Plank created the company Under Armour as a solution to being the “sweatiest guy on the football field”. Frustrated by his sweat-soaked cotton T-shirts’ inability to keep him dry and comfortable, he searched for a material that would wick (remove) the sweat from his body. Started in 1996, Under Armour is a $2.4 billion company today.
At 33 years old, Debra Sterling loved the idea of making toys for young girls that encouraged them to be an engineer. Her passion for social activism drove Debra’s innovative thinking to use her past knowledge of engineering to create GoldieBlox, engineering toys for young girls. Being persistent after being told that girls only like to play with dolls, she ignored the negative feedback to start a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter and raised $300,000.00 from the public to begin her company. Today you can purchase GoldieBlox at stores like Target and Toys R Us.
A young 17 year old Patricia Manubay was bullied a lot in middle school and elementary school. As a result, she started “thinking outside the box” to help other kids achieve their dreams by creating Dream Box. The ideas behind Dream box is, people from around the country can donate a box that’s packed with school supplies (notebooks, glue sticks, and pencils), a dream journal, and a few letters of encouragement to help inspire kids along their academic journey. Today, she has distributed 100,000 Dream Boxes to students that need just a little encouragement in their day.
There is a Hyper Cool Super Power in all of us. I invite you to start your journey with a few simple steps to claim your super hero cape.
Take inventory of your talents, skills and passions. Hyper-Cool Super Powers start with self-awareness. It is important to nurture your most amazing ideas, thoughts and wonderings to unleash your super power. Start with creating a Vision Board that highlights your talents, skills, and special abilities. Close your eyes and see yourself with power you have always imagined. Visualizing your inner most desires is a powerful tool and it is known to be used by some of the most successful and influential people.
Practice thinking outside the box. Make a list of at least 20 different ways you can approach a problem or situation. Looking a situation or problem from multiple perspectives breeds innovation. The deeper you dig the more amazing your ideas become. Be willing and open to share your ideas with others to add your new found perspectives to your list. Investigate how others have approached a similar situation and refine your list even further.
Apply past knowledge or recently acquired knowledge to solve a problem or solution to a situation. We have all heard the saying, “Don’t re-invent the wheel.” Simply put, build on existing knowledge to improve of modify an already established good idea. There is great value in reflecting on what you already know. You may have had the solution already at your fingertips. Now just tweak it a little to make the idea amazing.
Gather important information or data to make good decisions. Do not assume you know all the facts or possible outcomes to a solution. Take the time to investigate past experiences, research the most relevant information and seek opinions of experts in the field of interest. Good data leads to insights and the ability to see into the future. Start with crystallizing your goals so you may generate a list of highly effective questions that are designed to reveal an effect strategy.
Take Responsible Action. Once you are confident that you have taken all the appropriate steps to examine and reflect, begin designing your next big idea and act on it. Be bold and resist fear of failure, mistake, or being incorrect. Being wrong is great for big ideas. Making a mistake in your assumptions will help you with the next version of your plan of action. You now have new background information and newly acquired knowledge to recalculate the next version of your strategy.