The Pain of Not Shipping

And How You Can Force Yourself to Start Again


Have you ever experienced a week during which nothing got done in your business? No code was shipped. No articles were written. Literally, nothing (of value) got done.

It’s the worst. And I just experienced a couple of those weeks…

Not many founders talk about this pain (or the many other problems that can crop up in running their new business), but it can come as a result of having too much on your plate, or burnout, or both.

In my case, our client work became overwhelming, and my computer decided to die, and about a million other things pulled me away from the business.

Not only did my computer die, but it took with it a big re-design (`git push` often!) around our new (still not live) pricing plans for HookFeed.

All I’ve wanted to do lately is to start executing again, but it just hasn’t been possible. I don’t have the energy or the time.

So how can you get around this yourself and start shipping again? Force it.


Write an article on Medium

Think this article is easy for me to write? It’s not.

I’ve never forced an article quite like this one.
But I know that it is necessary.

We’ve found that the best fuel in startup-world is momentum. And the days when we write articles and get to watch them get distributed to thousands of thankful readers, are fantastic. It drives so much excitement, connects us with others, and is usually the seed for future collaborations/partnerships.

Force yourself to write some easy code (and ship it)

In my case, after getting Ruby setup (which is a nightmare in itself), I was staring down the barrel at getting each of our (way too many) projects setup. You know, setting up ENVs, databases, git branches, deploy setup, etc. That’s not typically fun work.

So today, I’ll be refactoring the HookFeed API. Something that will be relatively quick, new to me, and challenging/fun. Through the process, I will get my hands dirty again with our main project, rather than letting myself get distracted by the many other ideas we have.


I hope this was a helpful read for you. If you’re struggling to make progress on your product as we speak, let me know on Twitter. I might be able to help.

I’m Matt Goldman. I’m building HookFeed: alerts and analytics for your Stripe account. I’m also writing a book about how to launch a kickass software product with my partner Joelle and Michael Sacca.