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Does the "Think Realistic, Think Practical" attitude restrict innovation?

All of us (or most of us) have come across this "attitude" at some point of time in our lives. While i understand it is crucial to be practical in business as in life, i also wonder at all times if this "Be Practical, Be Realistic" approach as i like to call it, acts as a hindrance to innovation. Would love to hear some thoughts on this!

  • Sep 5 2013: Of course it does.

    Life is a balancing act most of the time, and part of the challenge is to recognize when to discard balance and challenge the edge.

    Most of the time boldness will get you into trouble, but sometimes boldness is necessary. The ability to recognize these unusual situations is a matter of good judgment and wisdom.

    Similarly, when you stop thinking practically you might be headed toward trouble, or perhaps just wasting your time. But some problems cannot be solved by thinking practically, and require a different approach.

    Google spends a lot of money encouraging its people to constantly innovate. Much of that money is wasted, in the sense that many projects produce nothing usable or profitable. Google can afford that approach, but if you used that as a model for living, you would likely end up poor and very unhappy.
    • Sep 6 2013: FANTASTIC RESPONSE!

      The following is something that I've put much effort towards:

      "The 70/20/10 Model is a business resource management model pioneered by Eric Schmidt and articulated about Google in 2005

      This model dictates that, to cultivate innovation, employees should utilize their time in the following ratio:
      70% of time should be dedicated to core business tasks.
      20% of time should be dedicated to projects related to the core business.
      10% of time should be dedicated to projects unrelated to the core business."

      Actively maintain inspiration. individuals to confide in, assume little to nothing, and never allow anything but your best efforts to guide you.

      Most importantly:
      "You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it's an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before."
      Rahm Emanuel

      This can apply to all failures while never limiting your definition of abundance through restricting your ability to recognize the potential of applying the resulting lessons and knowledge from said failures. Revisiting past failures after extended periods of time as well introduces fresh perspective, increasing the opportunities of achieving success. Waste nothing.
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    Sep 9 2013: the destiny can take much from our dreams like the free will that we have can change much our destiny.
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    Sep 9 2013: I think it could act as a hindrance. But one does have to make judgement as to when and where to allow one's imagination to soar, sometimes one needs to just quickly get the job done, other times there is space for creativity.
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    Sep 9 2013: It is absolutely and unnecessarily limiting. There's a lot more to reality than pragmatism. Even look at some of the most "practical" inventions: many came to us through PLAY. Not work. This of course, however, depends on the definition of realistic. My definition is "reality says, 'this is happening,' and I say, 'ok.'" A lot of situations reality says is happening require a great deal of abstract reasoning, at least that's been the case in my life.
    After all, we are not simply here to survive. The pre-frontal cortices we all know and love evolved for more than just survival. Moreoever, the prefrontal cortex can be used for basically one of two things: Creating solution or creating/maintaining problems. Hate to say it, but the practical only mentality creates more problems than solutions. A lot of solutions come from dipping into the abstract. There needs to be a balance between function and essence, being and doing. One last dagger, but being preceeds doing - otherwise, you're working for the sake of working, producing for no other reason than to produce. Which is exactly what cancer does.
  • Sep 6 2013: To be what DeBono called a lateral thinker one cna not always be practical.
  • Sep 6 2013: no being realistic and practical are part of the innovation process. you have the idea but if it can not be implemented it is worthless and a waste of time. The process is to make the innovation applicable.
  • Sep 5 2013: A better sentence would perhaps be, "do realistic, do practical". You can dream of impossible things all you want to no ill effect after all. Thinking of them should, if anything, be encouraged.
    Actually attempting to do the impossible however, is nothing but a waste of resources. If anything, it hurts innovation.

    Theorizing about the unrealistic and impractical makes for an important thought exercise. It should, however, in no way limit one's ability to think practically and realistically.
    Both have their place, though only the latter should ever make it as far as the "doing" stage.