When you start a project you are all excited to get started with all of these great Idea’s on how to make it the best product/service in the industry. This motivation can only keep you going for so long. At some point the grind of fixing a bug here or there will start resting on your shoulders and it will become a drugery rather then a fun project.

This has happened with many of my projects. Currently one of my projects has stagnated for over 2 years. For many reasons but one was that I just did not want to work on it because I thought that I had gotten all of the hard stuff out of the way. This by no means makes it a finished product but it lost it’s luster to me.

Spending time

As some of you might already know where this is going. I took the project off the shelf and dusted it off and started working on it again. “Working” on it for me is just opening my laptop and opening the code. This allows for me to remove the weight of progress from myself. Sometimes I do 10 minutes, fix a couple one line bugs or other times I spend a couple hours working hard in the internal codebase fixing an issue that has been plaguing the system since the project inception. This has given me two great insights which are foundational in James Clear’s Atomic Habits:

  • Showing up every day brings progress
  • Progress brings motivation

I spent much of the time while the project was shelved worring about why I was not getting the project done. This I thought was just because I was unmovtivated or did not care about it anymore. This was incorrect I do care about it, I care about the customers that use my products I just did not have the progress that would help bring motivation to myself to keep going.