Steve Jobs once said, "Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact, and that is: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you. And you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use."

Great ideas are everywhere. There are thousands in plain sight right now, but we don't see them.

To recognize them takes creativity, and to cultivate creativity takes patience, perseverance, and passion.

If you're ready to start making great things happen, try these super easy techniques to unleash your inner creative genius and cultivate your own million-dollar idea.

1. Question everything. Einstein once said that if he had an hour to solve a problem he would spend the first 55 minutes making sure he was answering the right question. When you find yourself thinking or following traditional ideas that everyone assumes are right, question them. Keep "what if?" at the front of your mind.

2. Brainstorm fearlessly. We usually value quality over quantity, but when it comes to ideas, the more the better. Think of as many as you can and keep them coming. The more you create, the better your odds of success.

3. Look for solutions. Don't just think of ideas; think of ideas that solve problems. We're surrounded by problems that need solutions--we just need people to recognize where they are and what to do.

4. Take a lot of showers. Sometimes the best ideas don't happen when you are thinking they should. You stall out under pressure--but then step into the shower and all of sudden it hits you. Sure, you have to do your homework for an epiphany like that to happen, but you also have to give yourself some zone-out moments for it to come to you.

5. Consume as much information as you can. The more you know, the more you are informed, and the more informed, the more ideas. Be known as someone who is constantly learning, engulfed in ideas.

6. Be on the lookout. Be always on the lookout for an idea, whether you're walking, talking, exercising, working, sleeping. Carry a notebook and keep a log of all of your ideas. You never know when the right one will strike.

7. Follow the demand. Ideas are good, but great ideas meet high-demand needs and provide solutions to big problems. As you're culling through ideas, keep the size of the market in mind.

8. Let 'em call you nuts. When you innovate, when you create, when you think of something new that no one else has thought of or even tried, be ready for people to roll their eyes and laugh. Ignore them and have faith in your own abilities.

9. Connect the dots. The best ideas often come from a failed opportunity, so learn to connect the dots and find openings in opportunities you've missed or failed. Take all the remaining pieces and put them together and see what idea you can generate. Use your imagination, and look for clues to help you find a direction.

10. Run wild and crazy. It is always easier to tame down an idea than to work with something mundane. Don't worry at first how things are going to work--make your ideas as wild and crazy as they can be. Go over the top. Be bold. Take risks.

11. Make a U-turn. When something becomes extremely popular, look for the antidote. If companies are giving you lots to choose from, make a u- turn and be the one that offers a simple choice that's easier, faster, and better.

12. Adapt and Adopt. You don't always have to revinent the wheel. Find an idea that's already proven and think about how you can adapt it to be better or work in a different capacity. Find something that works, then learn to adopt the formula to your new market and make it a million dollar idea by what has been proven already.

13. Treat mistakes as stepping-stones. Sometimes you have to fail a thousand times before you find something that hits. Don't stop trying, because when you stop trying, you have given failure a chance to succeed. Keep your head up, keep working, and keep learning from all the things that didn't work.

14. Never ever ever give up. Don't let fear keep you from success, and don't let failure make you quit. Remind the critical voice inside your head that nothing is impossible and that daring is required for greatness.

As you are molding and thinking of your million-dollar idea, make sure you have the discipline to execute it. Do all you can and work as hard as you can to foster your ideas and turn them into a success.

Every great idea started out with a thought about how to make things better. Now go out and make it happen!

Published on: Jun 11, 2015
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