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.

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

  1. Hello all,

    I’d like to go a few conferences in the next few months to share my work and meet likeminded folks – to San Diego, Albuquerque, and New Orleans – from the Bay Area.

    The obstacle is that getting air tickets does not fit into my budget right now – what with the registration fees, hotels/b&b’s etc.

    Any help with making my wishes come true is appreciated!

  2. I’ve wanted to get into photography for years now, but I can’t afford a decent digital camera. I’ve looked on eBay and second-hand, but can’t find anything. Any tips?

    • Some universities have the opportunity to borrow or rent equipment for low rates 🙂
      Could you perhaps find another partner in your local area who wants to take photography classes? Perhaps you could pay them a little bit to work with them. Also consider other people who are doing freelance work and consider tagging along and assisting.

    • @Amber Dent
      Now, I don’t know what exactly is within your budget and I don’t know what you consider a decent digital camera but I’ll try to share a few thoughts.
      I know of a professional photographer who does very expensive shoots but who has been talking a lot about getting really very nice results from a Nikon D3500, which is priced far below what a professional photographer would normally buy. It is an example of how technology has advanced so much that even lower-priced DSLRs have become very “decent” and capable.
      There may be other similar bargain devices “out there” too; this just happens to be one that the photographer talks about. The kit that sells with two lenses is still below the price of lots of DSLR bodies (with no lens). It is a DX format and I like something higher-end but he keeps speaking well of it for a lots of purposes.
      I know of another professional photographer who sometimes shoots on used “vintage” digital cameras for a personal challenge. That photographer gets positively beautiful results from an “ancient” 10MP or 12MP camera so long as the photos are captured under right conditions within the performance limits of the camera/sensor. That old equipment is maybe not so good for wall size prints or for very challenging shots but when you learn the limitations of the camera and how to get good results with it, the experience itself teaches you a few things about principles of digital photography. If you keep an eye out, you’ll discover photos that were made with those old cameras that still look completely beautiful today, with great compositions. (If you did decided to go with ancient digital camera you can remember to check for reputable critical reviews of the particular model before buying.)

  3. I want to work with creative people, ideally writers, but I am kind of stuck in real estate and a little too old to start at the bottom. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    • Can you branch out from real estate and write articles for homebuyers? I am co-authoring some articles with another builder and we are still hatching out some of the details. There’s a lot that can be written about regarding purchasing a new home, remodeling, designing, or building which is a good offshoot of the real estate market. Probably depends on how well your market is doing.

  4. Hi Everyone,
    I want to work for an international lodging chain abroad (I am located in Belgium) and guide them with their Customer Journey & Guest Experience. Every 18 months I want to move to another location within the chain. I am well-travelled and worked internationally within the hospitality industry. FYI: I am an independent woman, but not an entrepreneur. And if possible I want to get back on track with the Spanish (travelled twice to Guatemala to learn the language, but lost a lot due to no practice)
    Obstacle: lack self-discipline but heaps of self-doubt, is this a job or just a fantasy (and same old same old: money).
    Looking forward to your advice & info.

    • I would recommend looking at the jobs advertised for some of the global hotel chains like the Ritz Carlton or Marriott – I’m sure there must be plenty of jobs all over the world!

  5. I want to create a salt cave business that also offers red/near infrared light therapy for health. I believe light and frequency is the medicine of the future and people need it now. The obstacle is money. This sounds like a place where serendipity and frequency come together.

    • Maybe you can begin with one piece of the dream and build from there. How about partnering with a company (or many companies) that offer complimentary services? For example, offer the red/near infrared light therapy at spas or health clubs or luxury hotels on a contract/freelance basis until you have enough interest — and have saved enough — to open your salt cave business.

  6. One more thing-I design and create children’s clothing -especially little girls smocked dresses. Everyone loves my work. However I can’t seem to sell enough. I’ve tried Fbook, website, one lady has some in her store-I lowered the prices-once in awhile someone buys something. Any ideas? Should I start an Etsy store? Doesn’t anyone dress up their kids anymore ? Remember Polly Flanders dresses-real keepsakes. That’s what I love to do but I need the people to buy them !!

    • @Frances Hansen
      Hi Fran,

      Am I correct that I’ve heard three major areas of desire, (a) increased social activity and connections, (b) lifestyle change of doing more things you enjoy, and (c) increase in finances (which are now low enough to seriously limit what you are able to do)?

      I’m not sure but maybe there is a fourth one, (d) doing things that are valued and recognized by others, or maybe it’s simply being valued by others who you’re connected with?

      Do you think that sounds right?


      • @Frances Hansen,
        I was asking for clarification about the main problems you want to solve because it might help to clarify and organize what your next steps are.
        You seem to be generating and evaluating lots of ideas: my idea is to organize them and figure out what benefit or benefits you expect from each idea. Then ask if the ideas are consistent with one or more of the problems you want to solve. And then sort our your priorities.
        For example designing children’s clothing may satisfy your desire to be creative and do something other people value. And if you must make each piece of clothing by hand, and do not want to outsource production, it is possible that this activity won’t have very strong financial impact on your situation (unless perhaps you are able to charge exclusive, premium prices for the clothing.) You can then choose for yourself how this would fit among your choices and priorities.
        And you could weigh your other options in a similar way, asking if they are consistent and how much they help with the problems you want to solve.

    • So I had a couple ideas for smocked draperies for nurseries and little girls room. It’s a unique look. It would be a good Etsy type of product. Not sure how comfortable you are with draperies. In my experience it’s easier than clothing

  7. Hi again everyone
    It’s been a tough day today. This isolation is driving me nuts!! I’m trying to get my writing going. My sewing is stifled thanks to the carpal tunnel. I’m still recovering but getting anxious. Trying to come up with income so I can get out of here!! I used to travel whenever I wanted but the last year, the surgeries and everything have slowed me way down. I am 65 and want to get out of here but can’t afford to.
    I am limited. If I had gas money I would get out and just keep going! (Not always do great since winter in Upstate NY limits people)
    I spent half of today trying to find blogs that will pay me and sending query letters to magazine editors. I just need a boost but after spending the morning researching I petered out and lost my motivation. I have to get me back! HELP!

  8. Stuck! Feeling like doing this all by myself is overwhelming. So, I can only draw/create what I am interested in at the time and I feel like what I am interested in is too weird and that no one will like it. Pressure to get a “real” job, to fit in some box, exerts a powerful negative force that stifles creativity. I’m not relaxed.
    I am actually quite “talented” at drawing. My work is expressive and visually exciting.

    • Post note:
      Question: The “pressure” I mentioned is the real need to create income so that I may live. I keep thinking in survival and I can’t relax enough to create. I struggle to give myself the time and space to make something in completion.

      • Oh honey, I feel you. I think money pressures are the worst thing for an artist. (Have you read Elizabeth Gilbert’s book BIG MAGIC? Especially the section called “Your Day Job.) My advice: Find a way to make the money you need to live as quickly as possible. Make it a part-time job if you can so you have time to create. The money pressure will no longer stifle your creativity, and the set work schedule will give you structure to your day, helping you make better use of your limited creative time. Good luck.

  9. Well today I went to a counselor she hasn’t seen me since July. I told her I’m downsizing and trying to get some online work doing blog and/or freelancing so I can get some income and work from wherever I am. She was very encouraging to keep looking and keep going on my house without feeling guilty. If I could get to the point where I can sell and move to a smaller, less demanding place it would help me tremendously.
    In the meantime I keep asking questions to help decide if I should have radiation post meningioma removal (grade 2). So far I’m not convinced about it.
    Living alone and no one to vent to-I had a skull based meningioma that was radiated I’m in 8/19. In January I found myself on the floor with obstructive hydrocephalus and had to call 911-Long story-a week later in critical ICU. Critical condition. Dr back from vacation and removed tumor. Less than 24 hrs later-intestine ruptured-apparently due to diverticulitis masked by decadron. Almost died. Kids called to say good bye -on vent for 3 days (don’t remember) colostomy. In hosp Jan 27-March 8. Oh-also small stroke during surgery. I know-long story-colostomy reversal surgery-Aug 8-trying to cope with all of this and just getting by. Ugh! Thanks for listening!!!

    • {{{{{{{Frances}}}}}}}

      I’m so sorry for what you’ve been through! The only bit of it I’ve experienced is diverticulitis, and that was hell.

      I’m glad you’re “coping” and “getting by”. Keep on truckin’!

      (Saying from the 60s/70s, meaning “keep going, don’t give up, etc.”.)

  10. At every Idea Party, you’ll meet new people. Idea Parties are a sensational way to get to know the best people in town, and a warm and stimulating way to do some first class networking. Never underestimate the difference it can make in your life to meet someone who can hand you a piece to your puzzle. You could find out something that changes your life in this best and oldest way of socializing. Isolation is the dream killer. You don’t need a positive attitude or self-confidence to make your dreams come true. You just need a lot of friends who want to see you get your dreams. With that support, your world will turn around.

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