Financial Success

Shhhh… Don’t Tell Anyone… (How to Nurture an Idea)

Written by: Nick Ortner

Perhaps it’s just because of my “story”…

About how I had this crazy idea to make a documentary film about EFT Tapping, with no filmmaking experience, limited funds (my personal credit cards!) and no initial team…

And yet somehow managed to get the film out into the world, create the Tapping World Summits, and write a NY Times best-selling book… people ask… “HOW???”

“How did you do it?”

Obviously, there were a lot of elements to this journey that just can’t be covered in one blog post (though I do share more of that journey in my book), but I’d like to share one that I found – and continue to find – VITALLY important.

It’s a place where a lot of people struggle, and where, frankly, some amazing ideas find their way into the idea graveyard or garbage can, never seeing the light of day.

It’s a crucial point in time, in the process of creating a grand vision…

It’s… right… in… the… beginning…

The… birth… of… this… fresh… young… tender… idea…

The Birth of an Idea

You know the feeling: Ahh… inspiration! You’re relaxed, you’re taking a bath or a shower, you’re walking in the woods… and it hits you! What if I create this? What if I start this? What if I change this? What if I do this?

It’s an exciting time! Yes! This is it! This is going to be great! This is going to change the world. This is going to change my life. I’m going to do it!

Now… hit “Pause” on that scene, because this is a crucial time in the life of an idea.

You have two choices here:

A. Tell others about it, tell the world about it, and take action

B. Stay silent and take action

What choice would you make here? What choice have you made in the past?

What do you think I’m going to recommend?  Well, the title of this blog post might have given that answer away, “Shhh… don’t tell anyone…” 🙂

How to Nurture an Idea

At this point in the lifecycle of an idea, I highly recommend you stay silent, OR at the very most share it with one or two people who you REALLY, REALLY trust to give you positive feedback (though that can be really hard to find, so the preference is to stay silent!).

Why? Because this little (eventually big!) idea is just a little seedling. Like the young tender plants that my wife Brenna and I plant and nurture indoors for spring planting, we must first get them strong and ready to be in the ground.

They need just the right amount of water, just the right amount of light, just the right amount of air, etc.

So does your IDEA.

Let’s play out the opposite scenario, where you share your idea with someone, especially when it’s young, not fully formed, and tender.

You say, “Hey John! I just had this great idea to do X!” And John says, “Really? Wow, I don’t know about that, sounds like it would be really hard…”

Or even something a little bit more positive like, “That’s a really cool idea, but you have to be aware of this…” Or whatever John says that isn’t 100% positive, nurturing, and uplifting.

THIS is the place where ideas die. THIS is the place where that initial enthusiasm gets squashed and you start questioning yourself. “Maybe John is right…”

What’s crazy about this moment in the life cycle of the idea is that someone could be positive, but even give you a “look” that deflates your enthusiasm, and the idea could still wither.

We are, for better or worse, really influenced by our peers, our parents, our society (and again, you can tap on working to clear that influence!).

When to Share Your Idea

Now, let’s be honest here, the strength of your idea WILL be tested at some point. It’s a given.

I’m not saying, “Never tell anyone about it!” because that’s obviously impossible. When I had the idea to make the film, I had to get buy-in from other people to support the vision. I had to share the idea.

The key is to either:

A. Wait until you’ve thought about it more, started on the project (it’s harder for people to squash something you’ve already started), and moved further down the line.

B. When the idea does get tested, wherever it is in its life cycle, use Tapping to clear out any fear, limiting beliefs, etc. as per above.

When young plantlings are ready for the garden, they will thrive and grow because of the care we’ve taken with them in the beginning.

Treat your ideas with that same tender care, and they will flourish, come to life, and manifest in this world!

It is not once nor twice but times without number that the same ideas make their appearance in the world.” – Aristotle

(My addition to the quote: “So it’s not about having the idea, it’s about nurturing it to grow and spread in the world!)

Until next time…

Keep Tapping!


Have you had a great idea that perhaps you shared a little too soon, and weren’t happy with the reaction of others? Comment below!

Blog Comments

Leave a Comment

Your Comment

136 Comments on this post

  1. Sofia says:

    The harsh criticism that I have received came from my close relatives. I had worked so hard on the idea, created a web set, email, sample products and shared it out. The criticism was so bad I didn’t do anything-about for a long time. Then after many reflections, I decided that I don’t have to receive or believe the negative comments as my own, so I took all the remnant broken pieces of the idea and launched it on Facebook, Prayer Essential for College Students. It’s still in its infancy stage but I started it . Even when you have done all the work, be on the lookout for non positive energies around you. Thanks for sharing Nick.?

  2. Rory Crickmore says:

    Perfect timing as I am just getting a new venture together. Not letting anyone know until I test the market and see what happens.

  3. Hori Chapman says:

    Thanks for your inspiring words. I totally understand the need for a nurturing period to establish the right environment for growth to occur. But this, but that… creates doubt. Who would’ve thought that this ‘tapping thing’ could be so effective. I’m sharing what I’ve learnt with many of my friends and family. Much appreciated Nick!!

  4. Name (required) says:

    I was once told that if you share your idea, it will loose it’s energy. Like magic!

    I have ideas coming to me from every angle, and I tend to share them too soon. No matter the feedback, positive or not, I always regret opening my mouth. The ideas go stale, and energy is lost. So despite bad results, why do I keep sharing?

    The secret could come back to the original advice that the idea has lost its energy – it could simply be magic!

    …OR it could come back to the reason why we feel the need to share our ideas in the first place. This could be the key. Why we feel we NEED to share our sprouts of brilliance with people who don’t otherwise need to be involved?

    It could be that somewhere deep inside, we lack the confidence to build on the idea alone. We are looking for justification and reassurance despite knowing deep inside there are flaws or the timing is not right. Even if we get positive feedback, the reason we shared – the lack of confidence and sub-conscious doubts – still exists. We can’t blame the nay-Sayers or people we chose to share with. The may have spoken truths that highlighted our insecurities, ill preparation or wrong timing. They may have given us positive feedback, that just doesn’t sit right because we know the real issues.

    To make an idea flourish, we need to look at ourselves and ask if we can take this idea forward with action and confidence.

    If the ideas could stand up to scrutiny, we wouldn’t need to ask others. When we genuinely have this absolute confidence, positive energy and good timing in our own hearts and minds – so much so that we don’t feel the need for other’s input, the idea will flourish.

    So the problem is not the act or results of sharing the idea, it why we share the idea in the first place.

    • Nick Ortner says:

      Well said! And for those who tend to overshare, Tapping on the questions you posed above can often bring great insights. I think a lot of people simply seek validation of their ideas, as sort of a permission to move forward with them, or not. 🙂

  5. Patricia says:

    I shared my idea too soon. Though the feedback was all positive, I now felt extreme pressure to perform. I had to come through or look like a loser. I froze and did nothing.

    • Nick Ortner says:

      That’s a great insight, Patricia. We can tend to put a lot of pressure on ourselves once we tell others what we’re going to do. For some, it’s the fuel to keep them going, for others it can be a trap that locks them down out of the fear of what others may think. Tapping can help release that. Because in fact, we’re allowed to change our minds. 😉

  6. Chehale says:

    Perfect timing for me, too!
    i am in the beginning stages of an idea that i want to get off the ground and i am so grateful to have read this post re: keeping it to myself while i am tilling the ground and planting & nurturing the seeds.

    When i was a teenager, i told my oldest sister that i wanted to play my guitar in coffee shops (think Joni Mitchell!) and she squelched it right away – telling me that “you had to be really good at that to make any money at it…”
    Needless to say, i didn’t feel ‘good enough’ at it – so never did get out there and do it.
    i’ve been battling with those voices (real & imagined) all my life. Enough!
    No more!
    i am Enough!
    I Am!

    Thank you ~

  7. Cindy says:

    Nick! Remarkable and divine timing strikes again (through you and your message.) Thanks beyond words B/c I’m not sharing yet!!
    Great love for Tapping and to all of you, Cindy

  8. Kat says:

    I didn’t tell anyone, except my husband, when I started to write a novel. As I got more confident that I would finish it, I began to share the information with more, carefully-selected people. Unfortunately, it didn’t get picked up by a literary agent. However, now, that I am in the process of writing my second novel, I tell everyone that my goal is to earn money writing novels. I know there is still some resistance I need to tap through but I can feel my little plant getting stronger by the day. Thank you so much for all the great info and encouragement ???

  9. Marco Aurélio T. Fernandes says:

    I really liked it! I also see that you are absolutely right — and we do have to take care about ‘new ideas’!! Thank you!

  10. Kate says:

    Thanks heaps for the reminder. I am embarking on a new venture and in the past I have somehow always managed to squash my ideas, giving away the power by telling people about it. Loose lips sink ships!

  11. Pat Fleury says:

    I AM writing a book/short stories. This was the biggest hurdle I had to climb over. To let my doubts melt into courage to admit I can say these words. It may or may not ever publish, but I choose to trust that all doors will be open for my new creation. Energy waves that are positive will just flow, and I choose to flow without the “good” advice of others.

  12. Darja says:

    THANK you Nick ❤
    You are absolutely right.

  13. Judy says:

    Hi Nick,
    Glad you have mentioned this. I have often spoken to people I know about the importance of protecting an idea until it is ready to face the light of day. It is vitally important, just as a baby is protected from the light of day for nine months, until it is strong enough to take its place in the world.

    This is also the reason why I chose not to use Facebook for this comment. Too much information is out there and everyone is losing their energy for new ideas because it is blabbed before it is strong enough to stand alone.

    Thanks for saying this but the word is Ssshhhhh – as you say. Thanks for your tapping info – love it. Do protect your new ideas until they are strong enough to stand up to be counted. Your ideas are your babies. Having had three pregnancies I know what I am saying. You have discovered a great secret. All success to you – be a protective mum to your ideas. Love Judy xx

  14. Maya says:

    I totally agree that the response of others, even when they are wanting to help, can be deadly. But my issue is I think better out load. For me creativity is often a community activity. Also the human survival instinct to herd means we gravitate to people who are stronger. So if they aren’t enthusiastic it’s even worse. How do we meet our herd/team safety needs while still nurturing the idea?


  15. Monica says:

    From my past experiences, I think it is good to keep your idea to yourself and grow it to maturity first before telling. Too many times I was burnt, exposing with excitement an idea I had for myself or my children’ future and I’ve been laughed at and pointed at all the wrongs that can go with it. Only to see them steal my idea (designed for my own conditions) and apply it to themselves, after taking me down in negative comments. When it happened several times and you see your stolen ideas grow on others It’s kind of hard to consume. Now I shh…. until I am ready for my idea to go out there, well informed to sort the opinions I get about it, consult myself (in my day dreaming : ) and don’t wait further to loose strengths, proceed. In the end, no matter how well you plan it, everything comes with a risk, but it is better if you are prepared for it.

  16. Jenny Luck says:

    I Absolutely agree with all that you said. . . .

    New ideas are like new shoots in spring, and people can just come along with their hob nail boots and squash it into the ground. And you never know what they will say – even a dearly loved friend or partner. Creativity needs and thrives in solitude, and hidden for a while, like a baby in mothers womb – unseen by the world, a secret process. Authors have always known this – never to share the plot, or even written parts of a novel, until it is done and completed.

    You know the old saying : A camel, is a horse designed by a committee”

  17. Jennifer Strait says:

    Nick, I absolutely agree with your encouragement. There is such a strong culture of ‘Share your dreams!’ ‘Declare it and Share it!’…but the reality for me is that when I share, my enthusiasm gets watered down. I’ve chosen, instead, to nourish and nurture (and take action, of course) without sharing it because I realized that in the past, what was behind the sharing was the need for PERMISSION. Approval from others. Immediate gratification from their ‘you could totally do that!’…FINALLY I realized I’d rather have the actual RESULT of the idea becoming reality rather than the juice from talking about it all the time. Great post!

  18. Venita says:

    Thank you for sharing your wonderful wisdom of tapping and advice about ways to improve my life and those that share it with me,your info is always a positive and a motivating addition to my day Iam grateful !

  19. Mary says:

    I agree wholeheartedly! Some years ago I had a moneymaking idea of doing something I loved, making jewelry. I initially did not say much and made a few pieces I wore to work and coworkers loved them. I made a few on commission but felt there was some tweeking to do. Unfortunately at that point I asked others for feedback and got such discouraging feedback about the difficulties of breaking into the jewelry business I got discouraged and did not take it any further. Now I have another idea but am saying nothing except to a teacher that does nothing but encourage me. I am slowly taking actions that will support my progress in the chosen direction like eliminating stress from my life by tapping and letting go of activities that others like me doing because I am good at it but are not good for me anymore. In the free time I am slowly moving toward my plan and just thinking about it and taking small steps in that direction makes me so happy.

  20. battia says:


  21. Pilar says:

    Wow, this surprised me. As my answer had been A! Since l haven’t tapped on my own doubts (I need to !), I decided to talk more and more about my seedling size idea to a variety of others, indiscriminately, for a few reasons including: believing that synchronicity will lead me to make the right connections /partnerships that i would need to make it a reality; and thinking that talking about it I would Hear myself express my idea, which would bring it to more clarity, conviction and personal commitment! .
    But I now understand Nick’s point, and see the value of nurturing it more at home, and here and there only with selected others, before exposing it to all. What happened with my strategy so far is is that I have accumulated a collection of personal doubts based on the responses of many. So now I need to do my tapping work to clear those showstopping doubts I have out of my way to move on with my project!!!
    Thank you Nick for sharing another piece of enlightened advice!

  22. Virginia says:

    It’s so easy to lose enthusiasm for an idea or let a minor roadblock detour it. We have to hang on tight to those inspirational moments and take some kind of action quickly. Easier said than done but worthwhile.

  23. Nancy says:

    I did this very thing, speak too soon, this past week,. And was not happy with the response I received. More flabbergasting is that I have signed up with you and have not taken the time to read your tapping information although I truly feel it is body and time worthy. Go figure that I read it this morning.
    My subject is a Shhh… Don’t Tell kinda subject. My idea is about traveling, “doing” and sharing to those with illnesses and their caregivers. I’ve been diagnosed with Early Stage Alzheimer’s Disease. I’ve written a book of poetry, Blue.River.Apple. an exploration of Alzheimer’s through poetry. I depict actions, feelings, fear and frustrations and even a newfound joy, in hopes I can be of help others traveling nearby to and on this AD path. Five Million People in the USA alone! Not counting the caregivers around these people.

    Thank you for being persistent and getting my attention.

  24. Elaine says:

    I had a brilliant idea a few years ago and my friend virtually laughed out loud when I shared it with her. I dropped it like a hot potato.

  25. Mary says:

    Thank you Nick! You spoke directly to my nagging doubts about an idea I know is brilliant. Perfect timing (why would I be surprised when I was asking for clarification of some sort?!!). I’ll be taking a new direction in this and tapping. This time I’ll keep the process germinating quietly underground, just between me and the Universe, until it is really ready to bloom in the world. I love the seedling analogy because it’s easy to envision. Many thanks 🙂

  26. Sharon says:

    Agree with you wholeheartedly. In the past, I’ve shared ideas too soon.
    Developing the ideas into more detail later on would have been much better.
    Thank you for sharing.

  27. David says:

    Please be aware not to make the mistake of sharing too late. Ride the wave of the initial idea energy – don’t pospone it because that wave is the biggest one you’ll catch – and once you have stress-tested the idea yourself, start sharing. Do think about who you will share it with – positive supportive but honest people would be ideal – because somehow, you do need to determine if there really is a market for your idea. Who will you sell to, what is the problem you’re solving for them, their need. Is your product/service nice or necessary?
    Good luck !

  28. Elsa says:

    Big agreement. Such a big thing: when to share one’s ideas, and whom to share with.

  29. Mark A. says:

    Nick, you are absolutely correct! My ideas in the past ‘died off’ because I shared them too early…during those tender periods. But now my current project is protected until the time is right to ‘take it outside’ and allow it to grow.

  30. nicola says:

    smart article. I like the comparison of ideas with Brenna’s babies. Thank yo

  31. Cesar says:

    In a nutshell, don’t talk about what you’re going to do, talk about what you’ve already done.

Over 20 Million Tapping Meditations Played in Our App! Get Instant Access to our "Releasing Anxiety" and "Sleep Support: Quiet The Racing Mind" Tapping meditations.
Yes, I agree to receive email messages from The Tapping Solution & understand that I can unsubscribe at any time. Privacy Policy.

Connect With Us on Social Media

Follow The Tapping Solution on Facebook or Instagram!

Follow the producer of the Tapping World Summit Nick Ortner on Facebook or Instagram!

Follow the host of the Tapping World Summit Jessica Ortner on Facebook or Instagram!

Follow the producer of the Annual Tapping World Summit Alex Ortner on Facebook or Instagram!

Close ×
Over 17 Million Tapping Meditations Played in Our App!
Get Instant Access to our "Releasing Anxiety" and "Sleep Support: Quiet The Racing Mind" Tapping meditations.
Yes, I agree to receive email messages from The Tapping Solution & understand that I can unsubscribe at any time. Privacy Policy.