Maintaining the Drive to Achieve Through Creative Inspiration

As a prospective Computer Science major, I have a tough time deciding whether to spend the few breaks I have in between my studies relaxing or working on personal projects I think of. It seemed for a while I would begin working on a particular JAVA program or C++ application, only to lose interest in it as the days progressed.

I would constantly look at successful programmers web pages and links to web applications and say to myself, “I want to be able to display beautiful work that I have produced the same way.” However, getting setup was a daunting task.

Recently, I decided to take it one step at a time. Instead of comparing how my web page looked to a published one I would find online, I broke down my HTML files into smaller pieces and began to add things to them as I progressed. Tiny little details such as formatting a small paragraph line to look a bit more organized, adding a favicon to the title tab, or simply sorting my files in the repository helped push me to continue working on the web page. Each task I completed made me feel more accomplished, encouraging me to continue working.

Beginning to learn HTML on my own was easy once I started not to care about making the site look expertly crafted. Refusing to compare my work to another’s was one of the greatest discoveries I made my sophomore year of college. It’s ironic that comparable sites could inspire me to achieve great feats but at the same time discourage me from believing it was possible to do on my own.

Everyone has to start from somewhere. In my case, I didn’t want to invest money in a program or class that will allow me to learn particular techniques I may struggle to learn on my own. However, I understand that the process to develop something beautiful and immersive is long and intimidating. Thus, no matter how long it may take to develop my own web page or other applications I am working on, I will continue to move at my pace.

The Computer Science major is demanding. As someone who values social interaction between friends and classmates, I try to set aside time to maintain my relationships with them. I don’t necessarily setup a schedule for myself and determine the exact minute for which I must stop what I’m doing and begin working again. But I do keep a mental image in my head of how I have been balancing my life.

So start small and work towards the larger picture. Let websites and interesting features be your inspiration, not your termination.