Stop Thinking, Start Doing

An idea is to me always a bit of a double edged sword

3 min readFeb 10, 2016


I’m renowned for having ideas, so much so that my colleagues would probably like to have a little bell to ring every time I pipe up with “I have an idea” — which on the one side is endearing but possibly also a little annoying because it’s then not just me that need to do whatever is needed to make the idea a reality.

A perfect example happened this summer when following a devastating summer storm here in Tbilisi that took the lives of a fair few people. It also destroyed the Zoo meaning we had wild animals roaming the streets. We felt we wanted to do something to help, but use the skills we had…

So I had an idea…

Lets make a charity fund to help the people and animals affected by the storm

Because the small people always get forgotten.

The iconic image that had been seen across the media was the chilled out Hippo happily wandering round in big muddy puddles underneath a huge concrete flyover roundabout — so I suggested we use him as a mascot of positivity to carry the message outside of Georgia. Thus, Tbilisi Hippo Fund was born.

Within 2 hours I’d designed a logo and made an appeal video.

5 hours in we had 5000 likes on Facebook.


We had no idea what would follow… We decided to go the legal route and take time to register a non-profit company. Then came the fun of actually delivering on my idea — which was that we were going to sell Hippo Fund T-Shirts so that people would see the logo and talk about what happened… not just here but all over the world. Within a week we got the T-Shirts sorted locally, for Europe and the US I was fortunate to have made Tees in the UK before so I used those contacts. But I was totally reliant on a friend that did the administration and posting whilst we answered a ridiculous amount of Facebook messages requesting where Tees would be available. Fortunately we got together a team of about 13 people to make things happen, without whom none of what we did would have been possible.

When we started that Sunday afternoon we had no idea what the idea would snowball into…

But you know what? I’m glad of that because sometimes doing is more important than thinking — we have to follow our instincts and trust our feelings. If I had really thought too deeply about the potential magnitude of what the realisation of the idea would mean then it would quite possibly have been murdered by rationality. That would be a shame.

Campaigning matters. In this age of digital disengagement people think that going on the internet and liking is the same as doing something. It’s seductive, but ultimately wrong. We *have* to do stuff and in doing #NoFilterFeb you’re making an important set of points about how the way we use social media affects us…

Now, tell me…

Where can I get a T-shirt please?




English. Lives in Tbilisi. Contributor to Renegade Inc. Loves channeling ideas and serving good coffee.