“He thought nothing less becoming in a well-trained leader than haste and rashness"
- Gaius Suetonius Tranquillus
The common tech twitter trend of the last few years tends to revolve around "always be shipping". To stay still is to fail, and to fail is to die. We're measured by our output - and often the output is available, boasted about, and compared against by every other founder.
I'm a workaholic. Until relatively recently, I found it impossible to take breaks. On my off days from work I'd be building side projects, writing technical articles, or contributing to open source projects. It felt good to be building - why would I ever want to stop?
But code doesn't equal impact, and all work isn't created equal. The simple act of working or producing code doesn't mean that the impact of that code is meaningful in the long-run.
Out of the 10k+ code commits I've pushed to Github, only a fraction of those have been on revenue creating or impactful products. My personal Figma workspace is littered with drafts of projects that never got built. The most successful things I've created are often not the direct result of sleepless nights and missed social outings but rather calculated steps taken with great care.
As 2024 begins, I've been thinking about how to reframe my mentality around work from pure output to impact - and that means decoupling the act of building things (output) and the impact it has on my years goals (revenue, growth, etc).
Taking more time to meditate, write memos about the rationale behind large decisions, and being more ruthless about cutting things out of my life that may feel good but don't make progress towards my overarching years goals is the start of the behavioral change, but rewriting the work value system that I've grown to build a life around is harder.
This year is a canvas yet to be painted, and I find myself at a crossroads between the relentless drive to 'always be shipping' and the deeper, more resonant call to focus only on meaningful impact.
This isn't just about redefining work; it's about reimagining life itself. Learning to pause, breathe in the world around me, and ask not just how much I can do, but what to focus every minute on. A shift from being a participant in a race to an unseen end to a curator of my life's museum filled with the artifacts of impact.
Here's to a 2024 of less but better, of a life lived not by the clock but by the compass. In this journey, I am both student and teacher, always learning, forever growing, and eternally curious about the lessons that lie waiting in the stillness of a mind set free.