Have some fun

I’ve learnt a lesson recently that took a long time to learn. If you really want to enjoy your work, you need to add some fun.

Adding fun could be challenging yourself to do something you didn’t think you could. It could also be gamifying a project or task. Another way to add fun is to try new things.

I’ve lacked fun in my work for many years. And because I lacked fun, I had been seeing work as a grind and a means to an end. As something I had to do, not wanted to do.

What mostly kept me going over the past few years of grind was fun side projects. The thing is, I want fun for my main source of work, not just the things I do on the side. I want to work on things that excite me.

I’m finally getting to that point. Where all the things I’m working on are fun. And that’s exciting.

Categorized as General

Thirty Eight

Today I turned 38. I can’t say that I feel like I’m 38 (I feel a bit younger) but I’m definitely starting to take in how quickly my time on earth is going by. It’s made me really question and deeply think about what do I want to do with the time that I still have.

When I was in my late teens and early twenties, I had a lot of naive dreams and ambitions. The future was always positive and bright and I had a sense that one day, I would make them all happen.

But life moves on, one day after another, and doesn’t stop for anyone. “One day” dreams continue to shift in to the future. And then suddenly you’re in your mid thirties having a crises about not having chosen the right career path or achieved anything you deem to be significant. At least that is how it feels.

I know I’ve achieved a lot. I’ve worked on big projects, I’ve got an amazing family, I own a beautiful house, I get to travel and explore Africa and I live a really good, privileged life.

Still, I have this gnawing feeling every single day that I lack purpose in my life. I’m living life to survive, not to thrive. I don’t know if it’s a blessing or a curse but I’ve always felt, from a young age, that I’m here on earth to make a difference to the world in some way.

I thought the path for me was a software business. And because I built a unique set of skills in software and business, it felt right that I should start a software business. Except every attempt was a grind. Just look at the past few posts on this blog and you’ll see me trying to convince myself that this is the path I should be on and push through. The passion was never there. The ideas I worked on were not aligned to my interests and I needed to be real with myself about it. I was working on ideas to make money and not to fulfil my purpose.

So after 38 years of life, I’m focusing my 39th year on figuring out my purpose. Rather late than never right? Working on my passions, exploring options, reading, learning and trying to align my vast array of interests in to something that I can show and make a difference to the world with.

Categorized as General


Over the past couple of months, I’ve been feeling ready to start a side project again. My mind is an idea machine. It loves to come up with great ideas and get me excited about them. But there is a big difference between having an idea and actually doing something about with it.

Even though I’ve had ideas that I wanted to build over the past year, I couldn’t get myself to actually work on one. I felt handicapped, mostly by the burnout I was experiencing.

Now that I’m ready to start building again, I’ve faced another challenge that I often experience during times of creation. Analysis paralysis combined with shiny object syndrome. I’ve got a solid 5+ ideas that I can work on right now. Each idea has it’s strengths and weaknesses. So how do I choose which idea to work on?

What generally tends to happen with me is that I’ll pick the idea that I feel most strongly about. I’ll then start working on the idea and inevitably I will start running in to some sort of a challenge, as is normal when starting out on a new project/business. The problem is that my thinking then starts to shift to how great the other ideas are and what I am missing out on. At this point I even start coming up with new ideas that are good.

A strong sense of regret sets in. I also over analyse and create this perfect picture of how my life should be played out and try to align the project/work that I am on to this magical path. As you can imagine, these magical paths never align to reality.

All this ends up in a rather frustrating loop/cycle. Switching between ideas and projects. I get demotivated and the end result is that nothing meaningful gets done and my project doesn’t get launched. This has happened more times than I can count.

The most recent example of this cycle happening was with the current project that I am working on, Salespack. I was struggling with deciding how to build the UI. Should it be React like a lot of modern WordPress development or standard PHP server based templates? This lead to me questioning whether I wanted to work on a WordPress project at all, and maybe I should instead be working on a SAAS app. I even went as far as identifying another great SAAS idea that I could work on. I also considered just focusing in my wildlife photography for now and building a business around that.

I fortunately quite quickly identified what was happening with my thinking. But identifying the problem was not enough, in a situation like this, you need to counter the argument that you should be working on something else. Or at least, come up with a new thought pattern to override and be at peace with the decision of continuing to work on the project you’ve committed to.

The thought pattern for me in this specific case, which I found to be rather powerful and helpful, was thinking about my work and projects as Seasonal.

My current season is Salespack. It’s a WordPress/WooCommerce plugin and I’m happy with being committed to that. Why? Because this product, at this point in time and based on the past 7 years contracting at a WordPress agency, is where I can offer my best work. All of my experience in WordPress and Php development, marketing, SEO, sales, running another plugin business, etc has led to this point. I am uniquely positioned for it.

Putting that perspective in to my head helps me stop thinking about other ideas because there will be a time and a place for those ideas. They should be written down and shelved, for now. It also makes me more comfortable with committing to develop for WordPress at this point. There will be seasons for other languages and frameworks in the future.

How long will this season last? I don’t know and that’s not something I can control or should think about. But when it does end, the next idea will be knocking – that I can sure of. Right now I can and will only focus on what’s in front of me – on what is happening in this current season.

Categorized as General

Fresh start

I just pulled the trigger on deleting all of my previous blog posts on this site. Sure, I have a backup of them in case I ever need to reference them again in the future, but to the outside world, they’re gone. 404, no redirect.

I’ve been blogging on this website for around 16 very inconsistent years. And naturally, overtime my interests have swayed. I’ve written about all sorts of things. I started off writing about my entrepreneurial pursuits in the early days (2004-2010) but then over time it migrated to writing a lot about development and technical topics.

And this actually isn’t the first time I’ve reset the content on this blog. When I started writing about more technical topics, I removed all the business content that I had previously written about.

Well guess what, we’ve come full circle folks 😉

To explain why, I need to go back about a few months.

I written a lot in the past about feeling burnt out and it’s something I’ve struggled with a lot. And over the past year I’ve been feeling the burnout quite badly again. This time though, I sought to figure out why I was constantly feeling at breaking point.

And the answer wasn’t really a simple one. It was multiple factors and probably a number of other things I wasn’t and am still not even aware of. But one thing that was nagging on me BIG time, was that I was feeling unaccomplished. I’ve had ambitions since I was really young and over the past few years I’ve been doing nothing to chase those dreams and ambitions.

And so, fast forward to around March of this year, I reached a point where I had to talk seriously to myself and ask, what do I want? Do I want to give my dreams a shot or do I want to continue on the same path I’ve been walking?

I recently made a video about this on my YouTube channel, check it out.

It was clear to me that it was go time. And when I made the decision consiously to pursue my dreams, it was crazy to see how things just started to align and fall in place for me.

I’ll tell some of the stories in future posts, but there were two very specific pieces of content that I stumbled upon that were major drivers and inspiration to spur me on. They were…

The podcast episode above really got me fired up and I resonated so much with what Andrew is building and living with Tiny. And then on a more practical “how to” sense, the Micro Acquisitions course blew my mind. I’ve got a story to tell here about this, but it’s still unfolding and I’ll share it when the time is right.

And so I started my current side hustle. It’s called Sftwr, and we build and buy software businesses. I’ve got some really exciting things to share about Sftwr and what I’m working on! In due time of course.

That brings me back to today. The blog posts are gone because in a lot of ways, I’ve started fresh. Fresh in mindset, business and goals for my life. The previous posts were not an accurate reflection of who I want to be and what I want to achieve. So I scrapped them.

I’m excited to share this journey I’m on. I’ve got tons to share. Things I’m creating, open numbers from my projects I’m building, software businesses I’m buying, how I’m balancing “real work” and a side hustle and more.

If that sounds interesting to you, subscribe to my newsletter to follow my journey. Also, I scrapped my old email list of ~500 people, so if you were on that, you won’t be on the new list. You’ll need to subscribe again.

Categorized as General