If you want to extract leverage from the world, listen to the way people you love complain and joke about their problems. Remember, every great innovation in history starts with some universal human struggle or pain point.
ZOOMING IN — Elevating the power of a small solution by creating an extreme version of it
Behind every moment of unhappiness, there is a new idea waiting to be born. One fun way to become a more prolific innovator is to search for highly personal and human suffering, and productively cannibalize to make the world better. It sounds dramatic, but it really works. Zooming in is all about empathy, and using that in service of your customers.
My friend has been single for way longer than he’d like. And between you and me and the internet, the guy is a catch. Funny, smart, energetic, nice looking, what’s not to like? But the other day he was complaining to me about how abysmal the dating scene is. It's like the harder you try to put yourself out there, he observed, the worse your dates turn out. What a colossal waste of time. We even joked that he could probably save thousands of dollars and tons of frustration by going cold turkey on all romantic activity for the next six months, and then ironically, that’s exactly when the right woman would come into his life. Don’t seek and you shall find, right? But then again, maybe he's onto something here. Thoreau famously noted that happiness was like a butterfly, the more you chase it, the more it will elude you. But if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder. Who's to say love doesn't work the same way? If you asked ten of your most frustrated, single friends, they’d all confirm that the more they chase love, the more it eludes them. And so, maybe what hopeless romantics need is a more official way to stop looking. That brings me to my newest invention. Woo is an omni device application blocker that restricts all dating apps, social networks and other programs you might be tempted to use to find love. With the flip of a switch, you can get on with your life and let love find you when you least expect it to. Woo helps you get amor by doing less. Here's why this new software product will become successful. Because it will free up single people’s schedules to start working on what’s most important, which is learning to love themselves. Instead of going on expensive, time consuming dates with losers, they can start living the life they want, becoming the most authentic version of who they are. And by spending their time painting a portrait of being alone that’s beautiful, they'll be in a better position to love others and attract the very partner they deserve. We're now accepting investors.
Hey, you never know where these ideas might lead. After all, an idea is not any good unless it’s on the verge of being bad. Trying zooming in and see what you uncover. How could you elevate the power a small solution by creating an extreme version of it?
Extract innovative ideas from everyday conversations
Turn complaints, jokes and frustrations into valuable inventions
Productively cannibalize other people’s suffering to make the world better
Develop new products with a guaranteed market that people will love