One great idea can change your life.

Did you know that one great idea can change your life, and the lives of others? It absolutely can. When I left high school, I wasn’t interested in college, and quite frankly, I wasn’t mature enough to be trusted with a $40,000 investment that might not produce a dollar. I can only imagine it would be have been a four year party with a long financial hangover.

Because of that, I entered the workforce as a clueless teenager. I went into amanufacturing job where I had no idea what I doing, but I maintained industrial equipment. While I worked there, I learned a lot and one day I received a phone call on the floor emergency line. I went to pick up the phone fearing the worst. Much to my amazement, it was a major US corporation calling me at my place of employment on the emergency line to offer me a job, sight unseen. I was 19. How did they even know I existed?

I took that job, and for the next five years, I loved my job. One of the greatest things about that job was that the company (and you would know them if I mentioned their name) allowed me to modify their equipment, redesign parts of their manufacturing process and create new machinery. I changed the way they did parts of their process. I designed equipment that was manufactured and put into service worldwide. One creation of mine improved their output from 100,000 to 1,000,000 units without changing their expense one cent.

I was still under 24. I had no education, no mechanical engineering degree and no idea of what I was doing. But, I could see flaws in their process and I corrected it while the engineers sat in offices trying to figure out how to make things better. The company sent a group of engineers in from their corporate headquarters to find out why my equipment was producing more products than they had calculated it was possible to create.

I felt like a rockstar. For fun, I wore a pair of Mickey Mouse ears and Mickey white gloves while they were there, and I acted like that was the norm. I was just messing with them, and they thought I was crazy, but what I was – was amused that the pros couldn’t accomplish the same thing from behind a desk. I realized that great ideas are not only within certain communities.

I finally left that job and went back to college. Four master’s degrees and mid-way through a second (and last) doctorate later, I still relish the experience at that manufacturer. I could walk back in there today and open my toolbox and do that job again. It is that ingrained in my pyschi. Why? Because I realized at that job that great ideas are not isolated within a small group of well-educated and brilliant people. No, brilliant ideas are born everyday within average people, and those ideas have consequences. Not only do they have consequences, but they change lives.

Some of the electronics you touch everyday started in a garage by a college dropout. There are far too many stories like that to deny the impact of a great idea. Within every individual is a seed of greatness. The challenge most people face is overcoming a life of training that tells them “You’re average, and average people do average things and have average lives full of average events.” If you choose, that can be true.

If you are wishing you could come up with something that could set you free financially, let me tell you this, you can. The biggest impediment to most great ideas is past training and fear that your ideas won’t be accepted. So what? So what if  they aren’t accepted. Anytime norms are challenged, there will be push-back, but when you know in your heart that your idea is a great one, you have to dig in your heels and push forward. Ignore the skeptics and naysayers.

But, I don’t have any education! Now, here’s the thing about education. Even with my 30 years of obtaining college degrees, the things that have caused me to be in the top 10% of my real estate market, and that has caused my contracting company to turn down 30 large commerical projects a month have nothing to do with college credits. No, it has everything to do with great ideas. I’ve done the college work to keep my brain exercising so that it’s always thinking, which opens the door to thinking about the next best thing. I taught a college class last week where I challenged the students to strive to allow their minds to dream of bigger, greater, bolder and more audacious ideas.

One great idea can change your life and the lives of many others. Don’t think you can’t do it, because if that becomes your norm, it’s likely to become your reality. But, if you realize that you have the ability to do something that is mind-blowing, even if it is small, do it. Some of my ideas at that manufacturer were very small, but they created great results. Your brain is in your head to be more than a tenant. It’s an inventor, an entrepreneur, a game-changer, a life changer, a magician. Use it and leave a legacy of greatness in your path.

This post was originally posted at Activerain.com: One Great Idea Can Change Your Life.

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