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The author of “Feeling Good”, Dr David Burns, who popularized cognitive behavioral therapy, believes we have motivation backwards. That in reality, motivation comes from taking action. To overcome procrastination, you commit to doing some ridiculously small task — e.g., launching your code editor. Typically this snowballs into doing meaningful work. The trick is to only mentally commit to a few minutes and most of the time you’ll far surpass that.

But more generally, interesting side-projects are a good “saw sharpening” exercise. I’ve found that most of the valuable skills I’ve learned in life came from projects I was passionate about, and in turn those skills have benefited my career. Another side effect of these passion projects is that they leave me feeling energized and inspired, which has a spillover effect into my “work work”.

Really interesting take. I will keep this mind.

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