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> If you don’t have the self-discipline to work hard without external pressure, projects can be a license to slack off.

I agree with this, with one caveat. Some of my most productive bursts of output or problem solving have occurred right after a self-imposed, brief period of slacking off. There can be a tremendous benefit from the mental break that goes with 'controlled slacking off,' so long as it's intentional rather than an indication of something more serious (like not wanting to work on the project).

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