DollarCal: My first public facing lack of productivity

I gotta admit… Samantha was really on to something when she created the One Side Project Challenge. For those unfamiliar, the goal of the challenge is to keep people like me accountable for completing the things we want to build on the side of our every day responsibilities. The challenge encourages us to stay on task. Stay motivated. And continue making progress on our projects each month.

Which, you guessed it, is exactly what I didn’t do in the month of February! Hell, even this update (the second for Dollarcal, if you missed the first one, you can find it here) was past due!

February updates

…or my response to the following question.

You even had an extra day this year! What’d you do in February instead?!

User Validation

For DollarCal, I’d say the most important part of February was the user validation that I received from the readers of January’s post. I never expected to receive positive feedback on the idea. Sure, maybe a few recommends here and there. But actually hearing from people about the problem I’m solving, how I took the words right out of their mouths, or how they’ve been going about this the same way until now. All invaluable to hear.

So what’s all of that mean for the project? It means it’s the right idea. It means DollarCal is worth building past my own needs. It means there’s a potential market for it someday.

Thank you.

Rest & Relaxation

Alright, no more excuses. The real reason nothing actually got accomplished was I did something far more important. I went on vacation. No, I’m not trying to brag. But it’s important to mention as a reminder to people just how important not working is for working on things.

Everyone needs a little R&R. Don’t burn your self out. And especially don’t burn yourself out on your side project!

So I went to Florida (where I’m from) for 10 days to visit friends, spend time with family, and serve as the best man in my buddy’s wedding.

Me, holding the camera for the largest selfie I’m sure anyone in this photo will ever take

Making note of failures

Originally my plan (as I told Samantha) when failing for February was to take the every-other-month approach. But, she reminded me that it’s just as important to make some kind of update, even if it’s admitting a bit of defeat and documenting failure.

Fail fast, learn faster (or something)

So I’m glad I did. I’m motivated again for March to make sure this doesn’t happen again. My to-do list is currently the same as last time:

  • Get the calculations flowing based on current balance and a list of transactions
  • Feed that information to a Calendar view for what I may consider the bare minimum MVP

If you too have ever tried to accomplish something that you just couldn’t quite prioritize to the top of your list and get done, tell me about it! How’d you recover from the failure? What motivators got you going again?

As always, give this article a 💚 recommend if you enjoyed reading it. And please, follow One Side Project Challenge to see all the awesome things being worked on.