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Building the system

“Getting started is the hardest part” is a very popular phrase. I think it does get to the point though. Often times the biggest friction to getting a task done is letting the human mind wonder where to start. If you don’t have a clear plan then whats step one or two. What are their end goals or what do they let you tackle next?

Being an indie developer or making anything yourself requires lots of discipline. You got to make the plans you have to put the tasks in order and push yourself to do them. I don’t really excel at this. I try to make a project in Things or even use notes as a simple task manager. But it’s hard to pick up where I left off. Often times my development schedule is all over the place. There’s times when for weeks I’m doing tons of focused work. Then life gets in the way or I hit a wall and development stops.

I have been trying to get to a point where I have a daily consistency. Or a near daily one, where I can pick up where I left off. But in order to do that I need to organize my thoughts and plans into one system. Be it pen and paper or digitally. I thought on the analogue side, products like the Sidekick Notepad seem really appealing. Having a notebook that sits permanently below your computer or on your desk with your goals laid out clearly. I think this can be a good mental shift to write down my tasks on pen and paper and not type them out.

A digital option could be to use an app like Up Ahead to plan features I’m working on. I could structure it to say this week is _____ that lasts a week. Next week is _____ that lasts x number of days. That way I can try to motivate myself to keep my schedules but have a clear vision.

Up until now it’s really just been what am I thinking of building for the app? What features do I think I should add today or refine. This isn’t going to be a longterm option for me if I want to be serious about my side projects. So many times I hear really awesome workflows on podcasts like Mac Power Users and think wow I should try that. But I never sit down and create a system.

So for me to better set myself up to accomplish my goals I need to make a change. To finally sit down and develop my system. Whether it be more on the digital side or analogue. Once I can break my long streaks of not touching Xcode I will be in a much better place. I often wonder how many other indie developers manage their goals and plans. If you have a method that works for you let me know!