Mining the Imagination

Mining the Imagination

You may have heard that we use 10% of our brains but I am convinced that we use far less than that. Let’s look at our potential. If the brain has 4 billion nerves and each nerve has the capacity to store 4 A level subjects on one nerve, that means we only need 1/4,000,000,000th to pass our A Levels.

The question is why aren’t we using more? What could possibly happen if we could tap in to more of that potential? The human brain is far more powerful than any computer and contains incredible potential to create and solve problems. How do we bring out those valuable minerals from our mind?

I believe the next “Big Thing” is ‘Mining the Imagination’

Let’s try and imagine the first miner on earth. He didn’t think much about what was below the surface of the ground. Probably everything he saw above the ground was all he thought to exist, until one day he was walking along and saw something shiny on the ground and wondered what that was and decided he wanted more of what he found. After he had cleaned out what he could find on the surface, he decided to dig and go deeper to look for more.

He learnt valuable lessons along the way and knew that he could find more valuable minerals deeper down but there were rocks and obstacle in his way and had to figure out ways to get around them in order to get to the minerals.

Remaining on the surface of imagination reveals a glimpse of our creative potential.

We fall in to the trap of similar thinking patterns. In Zimbabwe, the creative option of opening a business is probably a Car Sale, A Hardware Store, A Clothing Boutique or a Supermarket. There is nothing wrong with these things but we have been so conditioned in following similar thinking patterns that we dare not try to go deeper and think out of the box.

Going deeper can be difficult and scary but there is so much to discover that is below the surface. Here are 3 Cool Inventions that I have been thinking about.

1. SELF WASHING CLOTHES – Imagine having clothes that could wash themselves while you were wearing them. Imagine the clothes also had the ability to wash your body while your wore them. This would be such a game changer for people who travel and arrive at their destinations late. They wouldn’t have to worry about bathing, they could just get in to bed and be clean. This could also be effective for the active person who doesn’t have time to go home and shower after working out, he could just go to the gym and his clothes could freshen him up automatically.

2. THE SMART TOILET – Imagine having a toilet that could interpret the state of your stool and automatically send information to your doctor and he could receive a detailed report about your health based on the results of your poo. It may sound gross but can you imagine he picks up something that is wrong with while you are flicking through instagram and replying your whatsapps. He could then send you whatsapp and say “Come and see me, you are not well. This is also a game changer for Managing Directors and CEOs. Now, the toilet is linked to the bosses office and if you wake up and have a running tummy, the boss gets a notification that you have diarrhoea and won’t be coming in. If you don’t have airtime to phone the boss to tell him you’re sick, the toilet would send the notification in real time and the boss would be like, OK He’s sick today and not expect to see you.

3. THE DREAM RECORDER – Imagine having a device that could record your dreams and play them back the next day. Imagine how awesome this would be if you had this as a child and kept your dreams in a Dream Vault and you could watch your dreams from when you were 6 years old. It doesn’t take long to forget what your dream was about soon after you wake up and after using the Smart Toilet you’ve forgotten what the dream was about. This device would be very useful for most people.

Here’s another thought – Imagine a way to get from Bulawayo to Harare in 4minutes. The way hasn’t been thought of yet and will thought to be impossible until a creative solution emerges. Actually your imagination can take you to Harare a lot faster than that.

Mining the Imagination is about drawing out the valuable minerals within our minds and unlocking our creative potential. The next BIG THING in Bulawayo is not the next car, phone, dream recorder, smart toilet or self-washing clothing, it is the discovery that we have been sitting on a Gold mine – THE ABILITY TO USE OUR


Albert Einstein said that Imagination is more valuable than Knowledge.

There is no such thing as a Bad Imagination. I believe there are 2 types of

Imaginations, the Utilized and Under-Utilized (The Mined and the UnMined) How do we begin utilizing our imaginations and exploiting this valuable resource… With COAL and GOLD.

C – Curiosity

O – Observation

A – Alternatives

L – Leverage

Curiosity – What is on the other side of the wall? Many of us just see a wall. Few of us will question what is on the other side of it. There could be a billion dollars in hard cash behind this wall. Who knows? The curious mind is always asking questions and wanting to know what’s inside or on the other side. It is always asking questions and wanting to know more. The imagination thrives on curiosity.

Observation – What do you see? Our minds see what they expect to see. Becoming good at observing things around us stimulate our imagination. We need to be able to see things and absorb what we see and not rush past. Taking the time to look at something carefully will open our mind to new ideas.

Alternatives – What else can it be used for? One of the most creative methods of stimulating our imagination is by coming up with alternative uses for things. Bricks can be used to build houses and can also be used as a doorstopper. Some people have cleverly decorated bricks with material and made them look like a little woman sitting on a bench. If we allow ourselves to go deeper in to our imagination, there are so many alternatives uses we can find for day to day items we use.

Leverage – Who can help us expand the idea? Collaboration is a power tool in going deeper in to our imagination. Sometimes, our ideas go quite deep but when we share them with others, we discover that they can take the idea deeper. Brainstorming with others can take you so much deeper. You will also discover that others have the “earth moving equipment” you may need to hire to penetrate the surface and go deeper.

The second mineral we need to learn how to utilize our imagination is GOLD

G – Games

O – Obstacles

L – Learn

D – Dream

Games – As adults we lose the carefree open spirit children have. A child can make up a game or create spaceships and rockets out of card board boxes you brought home after doing groceries. We need to allow ourselves the freedom to play games and see from a child’s perspective.

Obstacles – we have now realized that the valuable minerals are much deeper. We can also understand that, where there is an obstacle, there is an opportunity. Rocks may not be easy to remove, but we know that once removed, it reveals a deeper level of creativity.

Learn – The more you read, the more you learn. Reading enhances ideas. It is also important to note that reading causes your mind to activate its imagination. When you read a story, you don’t see words you see pictures and hear sounds and feel emotion all in your mind. Giving yourself time to learn new things stimulate your imagination.

Dream – We need to allow ourselves the freedom to dream. It doesn’t matter how crazy or farfetched the idea is. Dream. We don’t need to know how things work out. We often limit our dreams because we think that it can’t be done. Many of our ideas don’t get entertained for too long because we don’t know how it can work. We must allow ourselves to dream. Allow that dream to be detailed and picture how everything fits together. You don’t need to figure out all the steps, you just have to dream and know that it’s possible.

Fear and Self-doubt become like those hard rocks to penetrate. They limit us from going deeper in our imagination. If you are not very imaginative yet, it may seem like it’s hard to go deeper but the more you go deeper, the easier it becomes and the more minerals you will find. Your mind may be like be a mine today. Full of untapped wealth but when you recognize what is inside you and how to get it out, you will begin to enjoy the mineral wealth of your Imagination.

The next Big Thing is “Mining the Imagination!”

Published by Antonbhana

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