An idea not coupled with action will never get any bigger than the brain cell it occupied.
Arnold H. Glasow

Suffering from a creative block? Numerous solutions have been presented for overcoming those “mind-gone-blank” moments. Take a walk, read a book, listen to music, step outside…and the list goes on. While these solutions are occasionally very helpful, often the best ideas come from the ability to be perceptive in everyday situations. It was discovered that often ideas that make the biggest impact do so because they offer solutions to individual’s struggles or problems. These problems may be minor in nature while other times they may transform an individual’s entire lifestyle. Either way, these solutions are initiated through perception and empathy as it relates to individuals and their needs. Your customers will not always be able to tell you what is wrong; listening to your customers is oftentimes perceptive rather than auditory in nature.

The link below illustrates a great story of how one man was able to innovate a new way of looking at MRI scans for pediatric patients through his attentiveness to the cry of a young child. Here are some key points that can be pulled from his story:

He ventured into the messy unknown by leaving his desk and visiting the local hospital to gather first-hand insights.
He suspended his fear of judgment when he told his boss he wanted to rethink a successful (and profitable) machine.
He accepted losing control when he brought non-technical, non-GE people into what he could have considered his project.
He quickly took the first step toward a prototype, experimenting with something as silly as cartoon-like decals.

Source: Harvard Business Review