The Ramblings of Derek Homan

programmer, nerd, human

Too Many Side Projects


There isn't enough time


I like to do things besides work when I'm not at work

The Problem

I have a lot of side projects, I'm really close to getting done with one of them. But I get distracted and start or research new ones all the time.

I'm in the middle of a half dozen books (Atomic Habits, Hooked, Feeling Good, Building Evolutionary Architectures) but I think it's the same problem. I start one then get distracted.

I also have a half dozen things I want to write about here. But you are probably get the idea of where that is going.

My Options

I spent a lot of time rewriting this section, but essentially there are two options: I can keep up my bad habits or I can work on wrapping up some of these tasks on my list of big item things I want to get done.

The Why

This post wasn't one of the posts I wanted to write, but I felt like I needed to write this one to keep myself accountable to myself.

A book full of ideas is no better than a head full of an ideas. The goal is to be one step closer to knowing if this side project was a good idea. And moving onto the next idea until I find one that is.

The Goal

I recently told someone I was two months away from being "done" with this side project*.

*In the world of software development, done is never a reality. But in this case, "done" means confident enough to try to sell the darn thing.

So that's my goal. I want to work diligently on my side project for two months and hopefully get it done.

I'm still going to do other things, but I think a minimum goal of 10 hours a week with a goal of 15 hours should be doable. I expect it's going to be hard, so I'm also going to try to throw some self-improvement in there as I had already started two books that seem applicable and valuable during these two months.

The 'Atomic Habits' and 'Feeling Good' books are probably the two books I should wrap up while I wrap up my side project... they are both applicable. 'Atomic Habits' does actually have a lot of good pointers on breaking bad habits and forming new ones (which has already been useful for going to the gym and coding more diligently.) And 'Feeling Good' is really good about improving one's mental health by realizing when one is being negative and ways to avoid or correct those actions.

Whether I count reading a part of that 10-15 hours, or structure reading as it's own category I'm still unsure, but I'm pretty sure a schedule is going to be important regardless.

I'll post updates or post a post-mortem on the side project and process but for now I've rambled for long enough.

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