3 – Develop Your First Impossible Thing


If you are reading this and didn’t get here from 2-Find Your First Impossible Thing, stop reading and go back to 0-Ask If You Are Ready. None of this will make sense if you jump in with no preparation. Read the earlier posts to understand why you would want to be here at all.

Just to review where you are:

  1. You have a child’s composition book you are using to “compose a change” for yourself
  2. You have set it up with an index and summary pages
  3. You have created a list of more than 15 things that interest you that appear to be impossible
  4. You have selected one of them and are ready to develop it as practice for developing what you are really passionate about

If this isn’t already fun, I don’t know what I can do to help you. We’re going to get serious now, so here are some entry criteria to make sure you have a suitable “impossible” thing to work with.

If you answer Yes to any of these questions, go back and get another thing. But answer these on the page you already defined. Just use the numbers, rather than copying the questions. No point in wasting paper. Sometimes, the exercises I will give you will be intended to fail, because they really are impossible for you at this point.

  1. Does the impossible thing require more than $100 of startup funding?
  2. Does the impossible thing require new materials or techniques that are unknown to science, engineering or manufacturing?
  3. Would doing this impossible thing cause bodily harm to you or anyone around you?
  4. Would doing this impossible thing cause family or friends embarrassment or shame because people know they know you?
  5. Is there any part of this impossible thing that requires fraud or deception?
  6. Would doing this impossible thing be perceived as an illegal activity, even if it wasn’t?
  7. Would doing this impossible thing be perceived as immoral by your grandparents, even if your friends think it would be just find or even cool?
  8. Would you want to have to explain this impossible thing to your kids?
  9. Does this impossible thing seem boring now?
  10. Have you lost your passion for this idea?

If the impossible thing made it through these filters, you can keep going. Otherwise, to back to your list and find another.

Repeat the steps above until you have something that is mostly impossible but not illegal.

Since the answers above are half of your first page, go to the next page to do the second part of the exercise.

  1. Write down three things that haven’t been done that would be necessary for the impossible thing to be possible.
    If they are hard work, get over it. You’re about to do the hardest work you ever did in your life.
    This is just practice.
  2. Pick one of the three things that haven’t been done and write down five things that other people are already doing that would make it easy to recognize things that haven’t been done.
  3. Pick one of the things other people are doing and write down three things you would have to do away with to be ready to do what other people are doing.
  4. Pick one of the things you would have to do away with and write down seven things you would have to do better so you could recognize what you would have to do away with.
  5. Pick one of the things you would have to do better and come up with five things that would be the right way to do it.
  6. Pick one of the things that would be the right way to do something and come up with nine things that would be the right thing to do.
  7. Go back to the top of the list and read through the things you wrote and the things you selected.
    Draw a line across the bottom of the last list and answer this question:
    – Am I ready to make a commitment to doing this impossible thing?
  8. If the answer is Yes, continue on to the next exercise.
    If you have any doubts at all, go back and find something else to work with. The next exercise will be even harder.

Until I hear back from at least one person that they have gotten to this point, I am not going to add any posts on this thread. Unless there is someone who wants to follow me on this journey, there is no reason for me to go any farther.

Anyone up to the challenge?

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