How You Can Become The Catalyst For A Simple Idea That Could...

How You Can Become The Catalyst For A Simple Idea That Could Change The World

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Catalyst To Change The World

Have you ever thought about how a simple idea has so much power? This sentence is very much a cliché, and clichés are more important than we may think. We all have great ideas every day, and many of us dismiss them as pointless or too hard to pull off.

What if one of the ideas you’ve had, was able to make you more successful than you’ve ever known? This blog post is the story of how I came up with a simple idea of getting my friends to do a five day fast, and how it spread like wildfire.

My intention wasn’t to do anything amazing. The idea came out of pure compassion for wanting to help others to experience a positive change. I wanted their fast to be a moment in their life that they will never forget. I wanted their fast to be the catalyst for change that we could only imagine.

Like any idea for change, the act of telling my friends to fast came from when I did my own life-changing 38-day fast last year.

So, have I triggered a chain reaction? Let’s explore a bit further.

Below are the five ways you can become the catalyst for a simple idea:


1. Use one person as the proof

With any idea, you need only one person at the beginning. That’s right, not ten, not five, only one. When you have one person that has embraced your idea, you can then use them as the pin-up person and leader.

As people approach you and ask more about your idea, you use your first believer as the evidence of what is possible. With my two friends doing a fast at the same time, I paraded them around and let everyone hear their story.

There’s nothing like real life proof to demonstrate a point to people. Evidence is hard to refuse, especially when it’s right in front of your big brown eyes.


2. Ask quality questions

All I did to get this idea off the ground was ask my two friends a series of questions. You could call this a coaching session, but I prefer to call it a friendly conversation. Through this conversation, a health issue was raised.

Ask Quality QuestionsThe issue was very straightforward; my friend couldn’t get his belt to fit anymore because he had put on weight. I said to him, “how does it make you feel?” He told me that he wanted to change the situation. I asked him when, and he gave me a vague answer.

I then asked him whether he could think of any ways to solve it and then he gave me a few suggestions. All it took then was for me to add my idea of fasting to the list. Fasting is no easy task, and naturally, my friend hesitated in giving it a go.


3. Challenge people to try it

Because my friend hesitated to try my idea of fasting to be able to get his belt to fit again, I challenged him. People don’t like to be challenged, and anyone that is worth influencing with your idea won’t want to be seen as a loser.

So, I challenged my friend to start his fast on the same day. He gave me the usual excuse of let me think about it, and I told him this wasn’t going to work. It was crucial that I explained to him that he could only accept right now and commit to the change.

When he could see there was no time to think, I proposed how the fast would look and got him to fill in the blanks. I said, “How long could you fast for?” His response was “3 days.” Like any good coach, I made it five days. Then we mapped out the schedule and how it was going to work.

At this point, my friend was fired up and when I suggested a juice fast (nothing but fresh juice) he stepped up to the plate and offered to do a water fast (nothing but water – the hardest kind).

We then jointly set a start time and end time to the fast, and the wheels were in motion. It was paramount that the fast started on the same day otherwise, there was a chance that life could get in the way. Little did I know at this point, that I had become the catalyst for an idea that could become so much bigger.

“Great things can happen from ideas that are created out of a genuine need, and from a place of compassion”


4. Duplicate the success with a second person

Duplicate Success With More PeopleAs soon as my friend agreed to the fast, he began telling his colleagues what he was going to do. With no real pushing from my side, a second friend decided to join in. Let’s face it, it’s always more fun to do things that are challenging together than it is to do them by ourselves.

Within a few minutes of the second person signing up for the fast, they had called their wife to share the news. Unexpectedly, their wife then said they were going to join in.

Once the third person signed up for the fast, the idea had officially become a small movement. I thought to myself, What if this is how game-changing ideas spread? I’m convinced after this fasting experience that this is how all change occurs.


5. Use the leverage of leaders

A crucial part of getting people to do something that requires effort is bringing into the picture a leader that your early adopters respect. With my two fasting subjects, I emailed their people leader at their work and told them what the two of them had committed to. I listed the dates and times and asked for their support during this difficult period.

I then received an email back acknowledging what was about to transpire. There was now no way out of the fast and my two friends were committed. To stop at this point would be more painful than to follow through with their challenge.

As humans, we will do more to avoid pain than we will to gain pleasure. Knowing this fundamental flaw in our genetic makeup can do wonders for creating change that involves human beings.


***Final Thought***

Since my two friends finished their five-day fast, their friends and family have now been exposed to the idea. The other day, the same leader I mentioned earlier mentioned to me how they were conscious about what they were eating because of what they had witnessed.

At the end of the fast, it became more about the challenge I had given them. The two of them had realised that they had set a goal and achieved it. They realised that they’d done something that required a lot of willpower and is not an easy task.

How To Give Up CoffeeFor one of my test subjects, they struggled with the fast more than normal because they got headaches from the lack of coffee that they would normally be drinking. As a result, they decided to give up coffee altogether.

The thought of going back to coffee again was too painful because it had taken so much effort to go five days without it. My friend has now replaced this vice with a much healthier tea.

Once you become the seed for an idea like fasting, what I’ve realised is that the positive effects can go far beyond on what you initially expected the benefits could be. I never expected other people to join in, or for anyone to give up their favorite drink (coffee).

Next time my two friends have to deal with adversity, they will have their fasting experience to remind them of what’s possible and how willpower can get them through anything difficult time. This situation I’ve outlined is how you to can become the catalyst for a positive change. This is how movements are created.

What’s your one simple idea that could change the world? Let me know on my website or my Facebook.
Tim Denning is a former entrepreneur turned intrapreneur, working daily with fast-moving tech companies. He is passionate about what makes startups successful and is a thought leader/ game changer via the use of social media. Tim uses personal development and success as a platform for greatness. You can connect with Tim through his website or through his Facebook and Twitter.


  1. I have read your article being at work in the morning and it gives me lots and lots good vibes and energy 🙂 I remember you mentioned your friend already in one of your previous writing, and that you proposed him a challenge to fast and now there’s a full story to be inspired!

    You know, this is actually a very good example and a living proof you can start a chain reaction and trigger some big event with something small. I like it very much! And quite frankly, this example is not the only one of yours I am certain. You see, even though we have never met in person and have been talking only here in the section comments, I feel like you affected my life in a far greater way that many people I surround myself with. I feel like I can trust you enough to allow your tips, advice and help be embraced in my life. Because of you I started to meditate and subscribed to Calm, one of the best and useful application on my iPad and now I am dedicated to the longest streak in my entire life and I ain’t gonna give up soon. Because of you, I discovered Grammar Checker (it’s ads on this page, while I’m typing it, kindly remind of its presence haha) and it serves me well. Because of you, I am a coffee-free man for more than 6 months and green organic tea now is my favourite drink (nothing can beats the fresh smell and first few sips of this hot, Godly drink in the early morning after my meditation session!). Because of you I simply cannot give up any longer and be a failure simply because I realize I am unique, awesome and can change the world if I will dedicate my passion to it. Because of you I started my motivational program and use it daily to keep my belief system at the top level. Because of you, I will learn more and more in the near future, and quite frankly, it is amazing how much you can learn from a person you have never met, yet who dedicated his life to help and inspire people all over the globe to become their greatest version.

    Isn’t it the beauty and magic itself? 🙂

    My infinite appreciation to your time, passion, and perpetual desire, Tim, thank you so very much for being you!

    Much love!

    • Toño thank i’m very humbled by your comment. I had no idea you made so many changes by reading some of the posts on here. It’s great to see someone be able to listen to advice and then take action rather than passively absorb the info.

      Keep the magic going Toño and you will find what it is that you are lacking. Speak soon mate.

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