Just Give Up Now
December 2, 2012
That thing you've been thinking about doing? That great idea of yours? Maybe you've already started on it? Don't bother. Here are just a few of the reasons it's not going to work.
- It has already been done. Fire off a couple Google searches and I'll bet you'll find at least one or two nearly identical approaches.
- There's a better way to do it. You might believe your approach is solid, but have you really thought through all the angles? Are you a domain expert in this field? The likelihood you've come up with the best approach is miniscule.
- There are people working on it right now who are smarter than you, better funded than you, and have way better taste. They are going to launch imminently, maybe even in the next couple of weeks. Are you ready to go up against them?
- It has already been tried, unsuccessfully. During the dot com boom there were probably three different venture-funded startups that went down in flames trying the very thing you're considering.
- It isn't aligned with your long term goals. How does this idea even fit in with your family plans? Your career plans? Your life plans?
- It's low priority. You have way more important things to be worried about right now.
- You don't have the budget to do this well. Even if you could hack together a duct-tape prototype of this thing, it would take an engineering team 6 months and a truckload of money to build something worth bringing to market.
And so on. It's easy to crush an idea.
Look, the truth is that taking the leap of faith required to make ideas happen requires not looking down. If we all understood the risks of what we were attempting and had an objective assessment of our odds, nothing new would ever get built.
Everything I've said so far is probably true about your ideas and about mine. Forget it. As Dr. Seuss wrote so poignantly in The Lorax, "Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."
And if you think that any or all of the arguments above are a legitimate reason to abandon your idea, buy me a beer and I'll explain why you've got nothing to worry about.