We all agree that procrastination is not a good thing. We may have good intentions before we start on a project, but there are little things that just happen, or we make happen that stops us from working. This on its own is a problem, and sometimes you need some motivation to keep going. But an even more subtle problem occurs when you try to find motivation. You want to be inspired before you start working.
To write a blog post, one of my favorite spots for inspiration was hackernews. Unlike what the name implies, it is not just for news. There are some inspiring articles written by some very motivated and talented people. While reading, I too want to write. Well after I finish reading of course. But when I finish, I want to read some more. And then some more. By the time I am done, I am exhausted from reading.
I want to write but I just can't. I've had enough. Usually I stop for a while and find a non-computer related task to do to clear my mind. When I come back, I find no pleasure in writing. Sometimes I feel like whatever I produce is low quality compared to the things I read. So I give up for the day.
How is it possible that the thing I used to inspire me does the opposite effect? That's because, the problem I solved is boredom, and I have been entertained by reading those articles. What I really did was procrastinate in the name of inspiration.
Not that you shouldn't consume any content, but in my case I perform better if I do at least part of the work before I hunt for inspiration. It's easy to spend hours on reddit, flickr, or social media, without really coming up with something specific.
If you want to build an App, research should be part of the process, but it shouldn't be the first step in your pipeline. Create a mockup of your product first, something quick and simple that can fit on a napkin. Create the outline, talk about it with people first. If you still think you need inspiration, by all means, now is the time, but not a second before.
Make sure not to fall into this loop of looking at beautiful things other people created without ever remembering that you too are in the business of creating.
And now this:
Formal Sweatpants — The return of trolley by Josh Mecouch