I can relate a lot to this, and I’ve tried this on multiple occasions. The big problem that I found, is that I’m far too obsessive to do something in the morning, and ‘switch’ it off for the rest of the day. The result is that my work during the day suffered greatly, and so did the ‘outside’ project.
The only solution I found with starting my current project (mare.io), was just to do it. Quit the job and focus 100% of my time on it.
The truth is, building something from scratch is a metric shit tonne of work. And it takes a lot of focus to get it done. And the worst thing in the world is to just get rolling in the morning, and then have to leave for ‘real work’. Or to be struggling to fix a problem, but you don’t get to finish your thought because you have to leave. This can be horrendously painful and discouraging to say the least.
I’m not saying you have to quit your day job to make a project work. I just think that if you really want to make a go of it, you have to plan to leave as soon as you can. Save some cash, dive in, and make a run at it. The worst thing that could happen is you have to find some side work to supplement what you really want to do.
It’s scary as hell, but extremely rewarding.
Just my $0.02. Thanks for your article, Patrick!
PS. you can read more about my story of quitting my job and staring my new company here.