Optimists see life as a line on a graph that begins at zero and continues, unaffected by the forces of nature on a 45degree trajectory into the foreseeable future. Well, optimism is one word for it.
In truth and in most people's experience life is a little more chaotic than that. When you take step back and look at the results of your life your see ups and downs and detours. Looking forward, expecting anything else is going to leave you in a state ranging from anxious terror to simple paralysis. Some people revert to a world of perfection paralysis - better to do nothing than to risk an outcome that doesn't matter if it matches the Sound of Music version you had in your imagination.
I'm a fan of Richard Branson's philosophy of 'screw it - let's do it'. Who knows if the idea you have is going to be a success or not? One thing is guaranteed - if you never try, you'll never know.
I know people who like to plan every detail of their ambitious grand design to the nth. As a mental exercise that's fine - as long has they have a few contingency plans in place. To paraphrase the German military strategist von Molke "No plan of operations extends with certainty beyond the first encounter with the enemy's main strength" (or "no plan survives contact with the enemy."). In business the enemies aren't always apparent from the outset - any more than the weather is at a wedding.
Some of the best plans in the world come to nothing. In the mid 90s I formed a company with a couple of seasoned advertising and marketing pros. We had a genius business model to rampage through the marketing communications world and have all of the contributors to a brand's expression fall in behind a brand story we would create on behalf of a client brand to create a BrandWorld (we actually registered BrandStory as a trademark at the time…ah, hubris…). The idea was good. The unforeseen problem was that there were no takers. We built it. Nobody came. All was not lost. Our survival instincts and pragmatism meant we managed to beat the retreat, reform and create business idea that did succeed (much to everyone's surprise…because beyond having an idea and implementing it - ready, fire, aim… there was no grand design and the strategy was simply 'keep going and stay alive'. Even the product that made the company what it is today was an accidental by-product that nobody thought would succeed.)
So, next time you have an idea that you really think might change the world - just do it. (Do some homework as well - but don't worry over ever detail. You can't control everything - or anything much). You don't necessarily have to bet the farm or get yourself into hock. Bootstrapping a startup might well be a better way of getting it going than getting into bed with 'angel' investors who have no more clue about the possibilities of success than you do - most VCs lose money on most of their investments but are keenly driven by FOMO*/Greed**. If you accept capital from a third party then you are saddling your enterprise with debt from the get-go. You may also have to make commitments that prevent you from being as agile as you would if you had autonomy - easier to abandon a dog of an idea when there is less at stake and fewer ego issues.
Final thought. Nothing is ever fully formed or perfect. Consider every iteration of your project a prototype. Don't just do it. Do it better tomorrow.
*Fear Of Missing Out
** No explanation needed
This blog is a notepad of contemporaneous and sometimes extemporaneous thoughts about creativity, strategy and ideas.