The Escapism brainstorming technique is a creative thinking approach where you temporarily suspend reality and the constraints of the practical world to brainstorm highly imaginative, unconventional solutions. It’s a process that encourages thinking beyond the usual boundaries, tapping into the power of pure imagination.
Here’s a guide on how to use it:
- Identify the Probortunity: Define the problem / opportunity you’re addressing.
- Unleash Your Imagination: Propose the most outlandish, absurd ideas possible, without any regard for practicality, feasibility, or current constraints. The more ridiculous, the better. These ideas don’t need to be realistic, achievable, or even sensible.
- Generate Wild Ideas: Write down all the fantastical solutions you can think of. Push your imagination to its limits. Remember, in this step, there are no bad ideas.
- Review and Reflect: Once you have a list of wild ideas, revisit them with a more practical mindset. Look for elements within these ideas that might be useful or interesting.
- Bridge the Gap: For each wild idea, create a bridging idea that translates the fantastical element into something more practical. This involves finding a core concept or benefit in the wild idea and figuring out how it could be applied realistically.
- Develop Practical Solutions: Use these bridging ideas to develop feasible solutions. These solutions should be inspired by the original wild ideas but modified to be practical and implementable in the real world.
- Consider Implementation: Think about what would need to change or what resources would be required to make these solutions a reality. Plan how to execute these ideas in the current context.
Example of using Escapism:
The probortunity is : Preventing burglary
Stimulus: Use bananas
Bridging Idea: Banana skins are very slippery and hard to hold (in theory).
Potential solution: Make a door lock and/or handle that rotate freely except with a special holding device unique to each door. Only by using a special device can you unlock the door.
Bridging Idea: Bananas shoot out of their skins when you squeeze them too hard.
Potential solution: Make a burglar alarm which shoots a sign up and down on top of the roof to attract attention. You could even make it say which side of the house is being burgled so that people walking in front of the house know that the house has been broken into from the back where they cannot see it.
Stimulus: Have a crossbow which shoots intruders in the head when they come through the front door.
Bridging idea: Have something at the front door which stops them when they enter.
Potential solution: Have an electronic camera which takes photos of everyone that enters the house and either stores it on a disk in the loft or sends all photos directly to the police (who only look at them as necessary).
Stimulus: Windows and doors which lock themselves as burglars approach.
Potential solution: Have windows which sense people approaching and close and lock themselves. They could be unaffected by people moving inside the house.
By using the Escapism technique, you can expand your creative horizons and uncover innovative solutions that might not emerge through conventional thinking methods. This approach is particularly useful for overcoming mental blocks or when traditional problem-solving methods have failed to yield results.
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