The New Idea Person

By Patrick McNerthney 

I am always full of new ideas. Most of which involve improvements we can make to our home, or new and exciting foods we can make. For example, my in-laws recently gave us a 15-pound frozen turkey. Talk about inspiration! My brilliant idea is to smoke it until it’s delectable, then we (my whole entire family, including those relatives with suitable transportation to join us) will feast on it every day for a week. (Hey, it’s only 15 lbs.)  

Unfortunately, the boss ( wife) says “No.Way.” Mostly because smoking the bird will take 15 hours and one must baste the bird on the hour every hour. Apparently she has other plans for me on the hour every hour, like cleaning the toilet, scrubbing out the garbage cans and fixing the garage door. Plus, she claims everyone will be sick of eating turkey by day two. Can you believe it??

(Yum. And I mean YUM for days!)

So, okay, okay. On to the next brilliant idea: We need to buy gravel, lots of gravel, and spread it all over the mud pit left by the plumbers after they had to excavate and repair our sewer, and then backfill the holes. Picture elegantly placed paving stones on top of the gravel– a little Zen-garden pathway to bliss. Unfortunately, once more the boss says, “No. Way.” In theory because…well, I don’t know what she’s thinking. More grass? Why? Grass is basically just a weed, which requires feeding, watering and trimming every week during the blistering summer… 

But the point that I’m trying to illustrate here is: when someone shares a brilliant or even just a new idea or makes a pitch for some awesome change, it’s easy to groan and ignore or dismiss the person, because new ideas and pitches rhyme with more work for us. (Okay, not a perfect rhyme but you know what I mean.) At least that’s how I tend to react. My boss, er, wife, on the other hand, probably rejects new ideas as she thinks, “NO. I want to control everything and that includes what you spend your time working on.”

So how about this: Consider what would happen if we received all  new ideas with enthusiasm. As if we believed making change (which is what new ideas are all about) is positive, and that positivity is contagious. Imagine it!

Then we’d be surrounded not by dreading more work or wanting to control everything, but rather with a sense of optimism and excitement. As if, by egging on the “New Idea Person”, i.e. brainstorming, we may just get the best version of what the New Idea Person has in mind, and THAT WILL MAKE THINGS BETTER FOR EVERYONE. (Boisterous clapping and cheering here, please!) 

I think this is my BEST IDEA YET!. Let’s try it. Right now I’m dreaming of eating the world’s best ever turkey sandwich in a cool Zen garden.

(See? How cool.)

Besides, if we start doing this, we can always say “no” later. So there’s no need to shoot the idea down right away – there’s no downside for anybody when we take the time to consider a new idea.

Which brings up a good point. Fine Art Miracles (FAM) had a new idea a few years back: let’s use creative expression to combat the anxiety and depression your residents and loved ones suffer as a result of social isolation.

It turns out the act of simply making delivers powerful results in the elderly, children with challenges, and anyone needing assistance with daily living, such as: 

  • increased self-esteem
  • a sense of self-worth
  • confidence
  • connection to the outside world
  • a sense of mastery
  • and the realization that it’s nice to be seen, heard, and valued 

FAM has been around for a long time, but this still may be a new idea to you. If so, remember, there’s nothing to lose by considering this.  Check out Art Therapy, Music Therapy, Dance & Movement Therapy, Multi-Sensory Sessions, or the brand-new power duo — Drama Therapy and Drumming & Exercise Therapy. Pick whichever suits your fancy. These programs certainly make things better for those you care for…and YOU (the resulting positivity is contagious…or so we hear).

Reach out today if you have any questions. FAM is happy to help!

Well, time to skedaddle. I’ve got a turkey to smoke. Wait, I know what you’re thinking– I should build the Zen garden first. You’re right! That way I’ll have somewhere to hide when the boss smells the incredible aroma that’s going to bust me–you’re smarter than you look! Thanks!


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