Tonight, We Try To Take Over The World

In the vein of thinking big (which I’ve written about recently), I’ve been working on a new TOTW plan.

TOTW stands for “Take Over The World”.

I won’t go into the details about that plan (unless there’s some interest – in which case I’m happy to share). It’s big, complex, and multi-faceted… but none of that is really relevant to this post.

What I do want to talk about is why TOTW plans so often go astray. It’s simple really… they’re either too big or too small. It’s pretty much that simple.
And I learned it from Pinky & The Brain.

In case you don’t remember the old animated cartoon, it was about two genetically enhanced laboratory mice.

Brain is the schemer. Pinky is the good-natured but feebleminded member of the duo.

The opening song of each episode is preceded by this dialogue:

Pinky: “Gee, Brain, what do you want to do tonight?”

The Brain: “The same thing we do every night, Pinky—try to take over the world!”

Every one of Brain’s plans end in failure – either because the plan was just impossible (too big) or because Pinky’s idiocy screwed it up.

So what does this have to do with you and me?


The magic of thinking big is in knowing what kind of big thinking actually works: think big but not impossible, and don’t do stupid stuff.

Big But Not Impossible: don’t limit yourself, but be accurate in your thinking. For instance, if you’re doing your very first product launch it is probably not accurate to think you’re going to crack the million-dollar mark (unless you have accurate facts to the contrary).

Don’t Do Stupid Stuff: We all know when we’re doing something stupid, most of the time. But just as a guideline: if it’s disprespectful of people, if it’s less than your best, or if it smacks of moral ambiguity… it’s probably stupid. Don’t do it.

Okay, now that you and I have those details cleared up… you know what we’re doing tonight, right?

The same thing we do every night—try to take over the world!

Ray Edwards is a world-renowned copywriter and communications strategist, writing for some of the most powerful voices in leadership and business including New York Times bestselling authors Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (Chicken Soup for the Soul) and Tony Robbins. Ray is a sought-after speaker and author, hosts a popular weekly podcast, and blogs at

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  • I love it. Let's Do IT!! I am trying to take over my own local community, by shooting new shows for our local Public Access Channel.. They are desperately underfunded. It is my goal to shoot excellent programming for them to generate LOTS of public interest in the shows. Then as we generate revenue with the businesses we are shooting educational footage for, they will become members, and also encourage others in our community to support public television and free programming. And I will be the Hero for doing my part – maybe a little more visibly and vocally than others have in the past. BECAUSE I have learned form the Best and received advice and encouragement to BE the best – and to always work towards being able to GIVE BACK.

    • Wow – I think you got it, Mary! Thanks for sharing your TOTW Plan!

  • Speaking of animated life lessons, I prefer Phineas and Ferb because they are doers. They never question whether or not it can be done they just do it. And they do it with a casual confidence that is inspiring. We all need more of that from day to day don't we?

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