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Has this ever happened to you?

You have a great new idea. You’re really excited about it.

In your excitement, you tell someone who – the minute you open your mouth – you know you shouldn’t be telling.

Sure enough, they tell you it’s not a good idea. They tell you it’s not realistic. They tell you it will never work.

Just like that, your new dream is crushed. You feel deflated. Defeated.

You tuck away your little dream into the Dumb Ideas folder and go on with your life.

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I once heard a metaphor for the cultivation of new ideas that has stuck with me ever since.

When you have a new idea, it’s like a tiny new plant.

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Tiny new plants need lots of TLC.

You don’t go exposing a tiny new plant to intense sunlight. Or heavy rain. Or gale-force winds.

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Tiny new plants do best in an environment designed just for them.

Indeed, that’s what greenhouses are for. Greenhouses allow the new growth to have exactly what it needs to make it through those first, tender stages.

You see where I’m going here?

Exposing your tender new idea to people who are anything but 100% supportive is like snatching that tiny little plant from the greenhouse and sticking it outside.

Will it be exposed to harsh sunlight and gale-force winds? Maybe. Maybe not.

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You’re taking your chances.

That’s why you keep it in the greenhouse instead.

To be assured that it has the optimal environment for growth.

In the case of new ideas, this optimal environment often means choosing only a handful of people to confide in.

This can be difficult at times, because when you’re really excited about your idea, and you want to tell everyone.

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But when you still have tiny-plant confidence, this isn’t always a great idea.

I remember when I had chronic back pain and first discovered the work of John Sarno [link]. He recommended telling only 100% supportive people about his technique – a technique that flies in the face of conventional diagnosis and treatment – until you had seen results.

It was great advice. Because I didn’t expose my tiny new plant to the harsh sun and intense winds of naysayers, I was able to heal from back pain and have been pain-free ever since.

In any given moment, I have a least one tiny-plant idea I’m cultivating, one I carefully tend in the loving greenhouse of a few close friends.

This helps me to stay excited and encouraged.

It allows me to stay in the energy of Divine Grace, which is where the idea came from in the first place.

Do I slip sometimes and haul my tender little plant outside, exposing it to the sun and wind of less-than-supportive influences?

I do.

But then I rush that little sprout back inside and give it all the TLC it deserves and requires.

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I’m worth it. My idea is worth it.

And cultivating my little idea with TLC is honoring the Divine Grace that birthed the idea to begin with.

We all have tiny-plant dreams.

Let’s nourish them. Let’s give them everything they need to become big, beautiful plants of beauty and inspiration.

The world will be better for it.

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How do you tend your tiny-new-plant ideas? Share your comments below!

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