Don’t Start on The Computer

Hey folks –

It’s been a while. I’ve got lots to write, and you’ll see that in the coming weeks, but for now, I wanted to share something I realized.

When building something, it’s tempting to get right to the work. To sit down, and start doing whatever the thing is. And although it seems this should work, oftentimes your hours into the work and you realize you really haven’t accomplished anything at all. Why? Technology is littered with distractions, and even if you are spending 100% of that time on the task at hand, you probably aren’t thinking as critically as you would if you turned the screen off for a moment.

Before I start a new task, I sit in front of a whiteboard, or my ReMarkable tablet for a few minutes and map out the problem and a few possible solutions. Then, I keep that in front of me while I’m working through the problem. And since obstacles come up, and it’s easy to lose perspective of things, I’ll oftentimes take a break a few hours in, and sit in front of my whiteboard and map the problem out, yet again.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not perfect at this. When I have a great idea, or I’m in a state of momentum, it’s easy to want to jump right into the project, but I’ve found that when I spend just 5 or 10 minutes workshopping the problem out, without a screen, it seems to get done faster and in a more meaningful way.