Barbara Sher’s Idea Party


How Does the Online Idea Party Work?

You have a dream or a wish, and an obstacle to getting there. (If you don’t think you know your wish, work through my kick-starter and read this post. To learn why you must put logic aside to find your dream, read the following.)

The online Idea Party is here to help you – and the other fellow party goers – with your wishes and obstacles.

Voices from Success Teams and Idea Parties:

Having a team to report to and hearing what everybody did each week is very exciting. It’s kept me moving all year. In the past I made some good starts on my own, but found, every time, when the energy ran out, I ran out. Now it doesn’t run out.
Jade G.
Children’s Playroom Therapist, New York Hospital

I would do a painting a year, a sketch a year. If it was only me I know I would never do it. Having to tell you makes all the difference. It’s crazy why I didn’t do this years ago, it’s so easy all of a sudden.
Caroline R. Personnel Executive, Macy’s Dept Store

Post Your Wish and Your Obstacle Here!

And help your team mates out when you can. Use the Reply link to help, the form below the comments to add your own Wish and Obstacle.

(Your first comment below has to be approved, so it may not display instantly depending on the time of the day. Once your email address is approved you can post instantly. If you want your own profile photo to show up beside your comments, instead of the cute little design, upload your photo on and give them an hour or so to make it happen.)

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3,170 thoughts on “Barbara Sher’s Idea Party

  1. Dear all,

    is anyone out there searching for independence in combination with a good to excellent income and wonderful products (effect cosmetics and effect food of German quality, 100% organic)? Free online-shop and backoffice (1 year free, from 2nd year 49 €) in a social-minded, humane international team with passive income possible after 1-3 years.
    – 30 % on customers
    – 25-35% price reduction / trade margin
    – incentives like luxury cars and luxury travels
    – recognition from the beginning
    – photo-cream-photo: product sold
    – USP on the world market
    If yes, write to me or phone: +43 676 6372561

    I’m looking forward to welcoming you in our successful team!

    All the best

    • Christina, perhaps you’re not familiar with the “wish-obstacle” model for Idea Party suggestions…?
      If I were to imagine otherwise, it reads as if your “wish” is to cultivate a team to work for you…and your obstacle is something I have to guess. Maybe your obstacle is you’re not sure what’s appropriate to offer in what situation…? Or is it that not enough people are interested in joining you in this “great opportunity”?
      Which would imply that maybe you want suggestions on how to make your “pitch” a better one so that more people respond?
      Would that also include feedback on the site you direct us to?
      I’ve made my guesses. If what you’re doing isn’t spamming, you’ll need to clarify what you’re asking for if you want us to offer suggestions.

  2. Hi everyone out there,

    I’d like to go to Japan to learn Japanese during the cherry-blossom season next spring (1, week 2020) and combine it with 2 weeks in Hawaii. Does anyone have / know beautiful, cheap accomodation (apartment or house) in / near Fukuoka or in Hawaii?

    Thanks in advance.

    Christina (multilingual, entrepreneurial and open-minded from Austria)

    • Apt or house rentals are expensive in Hawaii…but if you bring some camping equipment, you can stay for six dollars a night (each) on the county beach campgrounds on the Big Island. (That’s not available for the other islands.)

      Why do you need to go to Japan to learn Japanese? Why have you targeted Fukuoka?
      Certainly, you cannot learn a language from a visit for merely a week. Languages are best learned bit by bit. You can use an online/smart phone service such as that has many people in Japan doing free broadcasting, some of whom actually teach Japanese on Periscope.

  3. Hi Inclusive,
    I’d like to learn Chinese according to your method. I’m a linguist and multi-lingual too. Many years ago I did a course of a very conservative style (only speaking, writing and reading was excluded). In exchange I could teach many languages (German, English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian) or we could join in an online-teaching project.
    I’ve just come back from Porto, Portugal where I attended a fantastic language school. I’m planning to go to Japan next year to attend a Japanese course.

    Looking forward to hearing from you and getting more tips to learn Chinese properly, all the best

    • @Christina

      You can connect with me at

      I’m also looking for people to help me write a book compendium on all word-formation for every root (not derivative) character in Chinese.

      By the way, start learning Chinese *before* Japanese. Once you learn Chinese, Japanese is a breeze.

      • Look for the book in German language
        Nicht ueberall schreibt man mit ABC
        Author Edith lewald.

        It is one page per sign. And explains how the Pictures became meaningful Symbols and then Chinese letters.
        Even if you don’t speak german you might like to look at the Pictures.
        I baught it, Ehen i tried to learn Feng shui, to find a First clue for Chinese Symbols

  4. Hi Jody,
    Thank you for your response. At one time I had thought about it but the idea of living away for a year was not something that I wanted. What I have done and want to do again is that I have volunteered for short periods of time. I spent a week in Spain with Diverbo (Pueblo Inglese) helping locals to improve their English and last year I volunteered for a day at a childrens’ school in Laos teaching English as well as conversing with locals at the Big Brother Mouse bookstore. These are the types of things I enjoy doing.

    I am teaching online with Gogokid. I am enjoying it very much. Classes are early morning and all night long. I think Vipkids is very similar to them.

    I will read the article when I have a moment. I just had a quick glance at it.

  5. Hi Everybody. So…my wish is to be living and working in Italy. Truthfully, I have never been to Italy this is a dream I have and wether it will be amazing or not only the future will tell. But I’m British, currently living and working in Taiwan. I teach English here but not qualified to the degree that would be accepted in Italy if I were to teach there. Now, I know I could get a qualification and head out there and teach English, but I have been teaching English for a while now and the truth is I don’t want to teach English anymore. My hearts not in it anymore, its just not that exciting anymore. I would love to own a vineyard or something like that, even though again I have no experience in such things but I would be willing to learn to make the dream happen. So my obstacles are what work could I do there other than teaching, also I don’t speak the language so I’m sure it narrows it down quite a bit. I live with my fiance, dog and cat, obviously I would want to take them with me, including my fiance! Any ideas?! Really looking forward to hearing suggestions.

    • Dear Jody,
      wonderful Dream!
      even if you dont like teaching and dont have the qualification, you could give english lesseons privately (just make an advertisement in a newspaper or th communal bureau of the citiy or town or village you live i or in the internet). You could also work in a callcentre for an italian company who searches for english native speakers. Or you could offer service for expats to help them with daily questions for living in Italy (this is of course only possible when you have settled there and know the ways live goes on in italy). And you could provide service in exchange for ilessons in italian language (for example baby sittig or cleaning the hoouse or going buy things for older people…) or whatever you are able and willing to offer…. may that be helpful to you? Wish you all the best!!

    • HI Jody,
      you could learn everything about wine and hold wine seminars in English. Like the idea?

      All the best
      Christina (multilingual and of Austrian-Italian-American origin)

    • Wwoofing! This would be a way for you to visit Italy, work at a vineyard and see if you want to pursue it further. You can do this with or without your fiancé (couples do this all the time together – your dog and cat will probably need to stay at home) and work/visit on many vineyards through the country. Start googling Wwoofing in Italy!

    • Hi Jody! Sounds like you are really up for big changes. What is it about Italy, do you think? When I read through your post what caught my attention was “Taiwan” (where I live – Tainan) and vineyards. Then someone mentioned Woofing. Yep! Taiwan also has woofing and lots of permaculture folks. You could get your feet wet woofing right here. And there’s lots of Italian people coming and going, though I only bump into them now and again. I imagine there’s an Italian trade office here, and you could see what events are going on. Good luck with all of it! And keep us posted here!

  6. Hi Rebecca
    As an aspiring writer of 52, I’d like to suggest the following:

    One strategy: Start and finish your children’s book first. This is probably a quicker project than a memoir, where you can get caught up in your own emotions, day dreaming about the past etc. If you need illustrations you can find freelancers to do that for you (who also want to get published like you).

    To write a book quickly with the purpose to publish quickly you can set a timer and write (or voice record or draw) for 15 minutes about everything you’d like to cover in your children’s book. Then stop. Look at your findings and sort by topic, these will be chapters, themes, story lines or scenes you’d like to cover. Then do the same 15 min burst for each section or longer if you like but stop at a high so you’ll return to the writing because it was fun. Continue until you finished a chapter/section/part. Don’t fret about publishing yet. This can be done online. Finish first. Done is better than perfect. It helped me to write 30,000 words in a month!

    Reality check: to be able to inspire other women to start writing and get their work published, you need to have gone through all the motions yourself first. Fears seem real but the only one doing all the rejecting (eg how you ‘should feel’) is our own mind. Also consider if you don’t publish how else you could inspire women to ‘find their voice’ (through a blog, online cooking class, speaking at local events etc.)?

    Another strategy: start writing a blog first, create an instagram account to begin to promote your Persian recipes. Then you can build a group of followers and share some memories and then these posts can be fleshed out for your book. A blog post article is quicker to finish than a book and great to test things out.

    Reality check 2: Keep your dreams in the right order: choose any strategy and stick to it, write to finish, only then edit, edit, edit. Then look at the ins and outs of self-publishing (lots of free resources to teach you online). If you want people to buy your book then marketing (promoting) is key which is the largest component of the process and a huge learning curve if you have no experience with it, assuming you have no budget to hire others. Barbara Sher has a Write Speak program starting in February if you have a budget, see

    I hear you Rebecca, I’m in the same boat, finished editing my book manuscript now need to follow through. What ever happens, keep writing if it brings you joy!

    All the best, Marianne

  7. I’ve recently wanted to get my foot in the door on learning coding and starting to make plans for my future Career instead of being stuck as a retail drone for life. I’ve worked with computers my whole life, and I’m positive I’ve mastered all the basics.

    What’s holding me back from achieving this is my Major Depressive Disorder. Every day I wake up with a 5% battery it seems and with all the help I’ve tried, nothing seems to help. Every time I start to put my foot forward on to achieving this goal, it’s like my brain is holding me back. Not enough time, not enough energy, there’s already so many people doing it, why should I? I just feel like my own brain is holding me back from trying anything, and nothings really pushing me forward. I’m in purgatory.

    • Maybe you don’t know that I have had to learn to manage depression too. My friend believes everything wrong with us humans is either connected to what we’re eating or what we’re (not) doing physically. Then he makes me laugh with some really dumb jokes (like the above.) But…even though he teases me by repeating it’s the food or you’re not getting enough exercise, it’s surprising how dumb little things can really make a difference…
      What I suggest is that you might find many little ways to solve your energy levels by keeping track of when you feel tired. Pay attention to yourself really carefully by starting a “healing report list.” Keep a tiny dated & timed notebook about when you eat something that makes you tired…or when you eat something that makes you feel particularly fine, when you talk to someone and get tired, when you read something that gets you tired, etc… Make notes when you get tired and what you were doing – anything you were doing.
      Later you can sort out the patterns to focus on why tiredness might be happening. Because currently – you’ve got this one big catch-all reason you’re tired or reticent to do anything that’s been diagnosed with an oh-fish-all name and all. (Believe me, I’ve been there.)

      For instance, doing this made me realize how often I am actually hungry around 5pm and so I start to feel sleepy and start to make mistakes and forget to complete stuff and feel really spaced out and get angry with myself. I realized I should avoid making plans when I feel this way because I don’t feel like doing anything around that time of the day like a grumpy child. But if I eat a high-protein snack around 4:30, a smoothie with protein powder or some leftover lunch, etc – (just a little bit works for me) then the tiredness goes away immediately. Then if someone asks me to go out later in the evening, making any other plans…I’m not tired and I don’t think I’ll be tired later either. And I’m not tired.
      By doing this journal activity, I also discovered the phenomena of decision fatigue – generally, I’ll get tired when I am faced with too many decisions in too short of a time frame, like when I go shopping – which again, I often do in the late afternoon. The solution to that is a sort nap – only 10 minutes works. But having a shopping list really helps to avoid being distracted by making decisions. So often there are many solutions and doing a bit of all of them is “the answer.”

      I also discovered keeping track of when I was tired that pillows need to be washed. I didn’t know this, because I used to live in a dry climate. I was allergic to this non-obvious undetectable mold that was growing inside the pillows I was using that made me not sleep well and get a stuffy nose when I slept. It took me forever to figure this out, because allergies make me tired and I was going to bed to sleep anyway. I also discovered those “snore-strips” that stick to the top of your nose and spring open your nasal passages. I originally started wearing them to be nice to my guyfriend who said I snored when my dentist changed my bite…but realized I really did feel refreshed & didn’t wake up at night so often. So now I don’t feel tired when I wake up also – big difference.

      I have sooo many additional suggestions that relate to how I’ve learned to manage my complete lack of desire to do what I love to do. When I finally get around to doing these activities, I slap myself, “why in the world would I ever put off doing this?”

      Can we chat more about this on my favorite encrypted site: ???
      Plus Rob Braxman at is an amazing coder and app designer and he is really excited about the new Librem5 phone. I’ve adopted him as my newest mentor for my own reasons, but you’d probably enjoy him as a fellow programming inventor.

      • Some well written valid points. the nasal strips had helped me for a long time . they also prevent catching things. I wore them during the day. 10 minutes of focused breathing helps me. When I have plans I am committed and already know how to do I am able to keep my energy and decisions up. After a injury… I have trouble managing my energy levels and sticking to new plans. I eat very holistic but lack skills for self regulating in many ways. I would love some simple easy peasy techniques to follow.

    • Connect online with a man named Jonathan Otto. He just produced a docuseries about overcoming Depression and Anxiety. VERY GOOD STUFF offering ideas to heal using natural methods. His story, his wife’s and her father’s story are very inspirational. He is very sincere and uses experts from around the world in all of his series (he has others).
      Surely hope this can help your find help and relief to that your real self can begin to shine better.

    • Hi. It sounds to me like you know what you’d like to do and that’s the first step. You also seem to have some skills that you can build on. I wonder if you can start to build on that by addressing Depression a little at a time and also putting aside a little time every day to learn a little about coding.
      My thoughts on depression: therapy and talking to family has helped me in difficult times, exercise that you might enjoy (like a 10 min. morning walk and or evening walk most days), distraction, helping others, being with others, writing down the difficult stuff (you’re not alone!) and then making a conscience effort to think of and write down some blessings too.
      Coding: are there any books on coding or free online deals?
      Getting things done: I have a hard time with getting things done at times (too much thinking for me) but I’ve tried writing/typing a list of what i want to do and I go down the list. Today I put the fun/easier stuff toward the bottom. It helped:) Good Luck, wish you the best. Hope that helps a bit

  8. Maida ,

    Have you ever thought of teaching through something like iTalki? You can be a peer tutor or go the route to be full language teacher on the site with your own rates and hours.

  9. I have worked over 30 years in offices doing accounting and bookkeeping. I was hoping now at this point in my life that I could start to slow down and spend more time doing what I really enjoy which is teaching English as a second language.

    At this current time I am working two afternoons in an office doing bookkeeping work. Along with that I am teaching English to Chinese children through an online company which I am really enjoying and would love to keep doing. While this is good it is not enough to pay my bills. I am getting unemployment help from my government but that is ending in mid October.

    Obstacle: Because the students are located in China and I am located in Quebec in the EST time zone there is a 12 hour time difference. This means I can only teach in the early mornings or through the night, the latter of which I would not do. In August I have been lucky to get bookings at night time in my time zone but I think once the kids go back to school that could end and then I only have the mornings to teach. So that would mean that I would have to find a part time or full time job in an office which would mean that I would have to cut back on my online teaching which may or may not affect my contract with the company.

    Wish: I would like to find a platform where I could teach anytime throughout the day in my time zone so that I could have multiple classes and use this as my main source of income but there does not appear to be anything like that. I have done research and asked questions in facebook groups but the bulk of the companies are based in Asia with similar time zones of 12 hour differences. If anyone can think of a company that would make my wish come true that would be wonderful.

    Another thing I am looking for is that I currently have a couple of students that I teach ESL to. The problem with these students is that they are unable to pay the rate that I would like to charge due to the circumstances they are in back home in their country.

    Obstacle: I have had people tell me I am not charging enough and others tell me I am charging too much. It seems that a lot of students I meet refuse to pay my rate of $25-30 per hour.

    Wish: I would like to be able to target more of those people who live in my city or abroad and can afford to pay what I ask for. I would like to know the best way to go about finding these people so that I could paid at least close to what I am worth and so that I would use my time wisely.

    • Maida ,

      Have you ever thought of teaching through something like iTalki? You can be a peer tutor or go the route to be full language teacher on the site with your own rates and hours.

      • Sera,
        Thank you for your response. I did try iTalki several years ago. I checked it out recently and they suggest my making a video in my profile. Since I don’t really do videos I would have to find someone who could help me. I think I will look on Simbi and Fiverr for that. But it is definitely worth my revisiting again.

        There is another site called Cafetalk where you can also teach different subjects. I put up my profile a couple of months ago but have had nothing at all there. Sometime it just takes time.


    • Have you ever checked out a model of teaching called “Flipped” learning? Essentially, it’s making a video of your “lecture” for your students – and then reserving another time – classroom time now available, since you’re not lecturing – to work with them independently in the time they would normally spend doing “homework.” …in essence, “flipping” the homework that was done in class with the “lecture content” to be done at home by watching a video that can be replayed.
      “Flipped learning” evolved through helping (sick) students who needed to make up classes so they wouldn’t fall behind on really high content courses like Chemistry, Language, etc. It was so successful, teachers decided to switch to teaching that way deliberately for every student.

      Using this model, you could have a membership youTube channel or Social Vision membership site (or Patreon) – with your lecture content for a very low price – you could use multiple platforms for more $$ etc, Then each student’s needs & skills could be tailored by individual attention at your higher rate of pay – in the “homework” phase. The students who have less $$ could just attend your lectures, without the individual attention that’s more expensive tailored version of what you have to offer. Your foreign students could turn into student teachers for this part of their course – because their students could watch your video lectures too.
      The lecture videos would also act as a portfolio of who you are and how you teach so your potential students nearby could see what they would be getting before they signed up for your course. Paying for a course n advance helps commitment levels too – I recommend that for your local students who have more disposable income.

    • Hi Maida. I’m currently teaching English as a second language in Taiwan. Have you considered moving abroad to teach? The pay is good in Taiwan, average wage is much higher than local wage.I know a lot of people who have moved with their family to here and are now teaching full time. I don’t know what company you are currently using online to teach but I have heard VIPkids is a very easy company to use. I’m not sure of the pay but I think the timing of classes might be the right time for you. Also I found this article which might help you.

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