How New Ideas Almost Killed Our Startup
The gist is that when you have a new exciting idea, you are in a state of “uninformed optimism”. As you spend more time on the idea and start learning about all of the issues, you get into a state of “informed pessimism”. This is a bad state that eventually leads you to a “crisis of meaning” where you either turn the corner into “informed optimism” or crash and burn.
Most startups are in “informed pessimism” and heading to a “crisis of meaning”. And, that’s when the Sirens start calling with new exciting and unrelated ideas. Those new ideas are tempting because they are still in the “uninformed optimism” stage and seem so much better than your current idea. I fell for it several times.
Your ability to become a successful entrepreneur is about taking your current “informed pessimism” idea and turning the corner into “informed optimism”. If every time you get to the disappointing “informed pessimism” stage, you impatiently hop back to a new idea at “uninformed optimism”, you’ll get caught in a never ending cycle. You have to be patient long enough with your idea to see if you are able to turn the corner.
I finally learned to resist these new ideas after reading Tim Ferriss’s post. I now see those ideas for what they really are, “uninformed optimism” ideas. They may seem amazing but you just don’t know about all the issues associated with them.
So, if you are in the “informed pessimism” stage, either plug your ears or tie yourself to the masthead like Odysseus and keep working on your current idea. Don’t be seduced by the Siren call of that exciting but shallow unrelated idea.