Over the past few weeks I've been working on a new website. My original goal was to have it finished and live this week, and when I originally planned out the project it was a totally achievable goal. I didn't factor in the issues and difficulties I'd encounter along the way that lead to a very stressful evening where I almost canned the whole project.
The truth is I'm not a seasoned web developer, . I've dabbled in the subject for more than a decade at this point, but it's definitely not a strong suit of mine. That's the reason I decided to launch my website on Squarespace initially. Using Kirby, a lightweight CMS, and a pre-assembled theme makes things a lot easier, but I still need to get my hands dirty in code to add the functionality and customization I need.
So yeah, I made a lot of mistakes, and it all culminated in me getting frustrated at 11:30 on a Sunday night. I came to the realization that there was no way I was going to meet my self-imposed deadline and produce something that I'd be proud of. Rather than getting myself upset though, I could have been more productive about it.
The mistake I made was that I was too firm with my deadline. Yes, it's good to give yourself deadlines but if they're causing stress and sapping energy away from commitments you have to other people then you need to give yourself a little leeway.
It's not the end of the world if you're not going to make a self-imposed deadline on a personal project. Yes, hold yourself to the deadline if you can make it, but nobody is going to think less of you if you need to stretch it out a little bit.
Learn From Every Mistake
The point of personal projects is to learn, and what better way is there to learn than to make mistakes? It's easy to get frustrated when you break something, or do something wrong, but if you step back and try to find a solution to the problem, wether it's searching the Internet or asking a friend, you'll learn how to more easily tackle or avoid that problem in the future.