Friday, January 02, 2009

Never park on an uphill

This is a piece of advice I read in some coding related article or book quite a while back. But I've found it applies to a lot of things.

The idea is that if you are working on a project (a coding project, a report, a paper, whatever) and you are stuck, don't stop for the day just yet. If you do, you'll be loathe to come back to it the next day.

This would be the equivalent of parking on an uphill. Which would make it difficult to get started the next time.

And you'd dread restarting from that difficult point so much that you might end up putting off re-starting that project again and again - maybe even for ever.

So if you are already driving, and hit a steep uphill, try that little bit more, drive on and park on a flat piece of road instead. That way you're much more likely to get started again and finish the project.

I've also tried to apply this to my career. When I'm under the most pressure, and when I'm scared of failing, is generally the worst time to quit. Because I'd be parking on the uphill, running away from my problems and fears instead of facing them. I might run away from that particular situation, but there will be more uphills in the life ahead, and I'd always be scared of driving past them since I parked on the uphill the first time I hit a problem and never learned to overcome the tough times.

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