Over a year and a half after tearing down my old site, I’ve finally launched my new one. I’d like to say I’d been beavering away that whole time, but in all honesty it was only after over a year of inaction I realised that time had rolled by far too suddenly and I had very little to show for it. So I committed to putting more effort in until I was able to launch. And now that I have, I thought I’d share a few of the more important (post-rationalised) steps I took that helped my go live.
Number one: Set myself a deadline
This was the single largest factor in pushing me forward. I wasn’t very specific, but by setting the vague deadline of ‘having something live, sometime before the end of January’, I was forced to stick to my next three steps.
Number two: Find a place to work
Working from my room was nice in theory. I’d have all my creature comforts; like a kettle in the kitchen for regular teas, my bed to feel relaxed on and my Netflix account for power-breaks. However they we not conducive to production. Basically they were too large a distraction. I’d make a cup of tea then grab a biscuit, decide I couldn’t work while eating, navigate over to Netflix and before you know I’d have watch four hours of films. I found that leaving the house and working at the British Library really helped. I tried a few other places, like cafes and . . . well actually only different cafes, but found; the noise; the constant turn around of patrons; the way coffee shops like to cramp in the tables and chairs; and the fact I was surrounded by noisy people eating a slurping away, mere inches from my computer and little much. Issues I couldn’t level at the British Library. Away from my distractions I found I worked harder and not only that, felt that as I’d made the effort to go there I had to make it worth my while, which lead into number three on my list.
Number three: Dedicate time to work
Sure grabbing an hour here and there to finish the small things wasn’t a problem, but it wasn’t enough to do meaningful development, especially with those hour fragments being separated by days and weeks. Having found a place I actually enjoyed working, and with it being halfway across London, I starting dedicating small chunks of my weekend to working there. Vowing only to leave the building when I felt I’d made a big enough dent in my to-do-list, I was mentally drained or just plain hungry. However I often found that I would reach one of these points and still want to carry on.
Number four: Reach a solution and run with it
Far too often when I was working in fits and starts, I would semi-develop an idea, or half photograph a project. Then, when I came back to it, decide I no longer liked. Rip it up, then start again. Only once I started dedicating meaningful time on development I actually started completing my ideas, and surprise surprise, when they were finished I actually quite liked them. If I still liked it when I next came back to it, I’d implemented it.
So those are four of the biggest things that help me finish up, and hopefully it’s made a decent proper opening post. I promise all my ensuing ones won’t be step-by-step/self-help style blogs.
The great thing about my decision to include a blog, is my work isn’t over, because now I not only need to think of a subject that people want to read my spout off about, but I need to continue dedicating time to write one on a fairly consistent basis. Ideas? Anyone?