Show up every day
In late 2017, I had this epiphany for a new side project. Like many side projects before, my first step is to secure the domain name and a variety of social media website handles.
The thing with side projects, is that I would always get excited about it for a couple of weeks and then it would drop off.
This one was a little bit different, though. What was that side proejct? You're currently listening to it.
Five on Design has been different than my typical side projects because since January of 2018, I've committed to showing up every week, twice a week to deliver this podcast.
For me, it's been a bit of a personal challenge and one that I think that I've risen to well. It taught me about the power of showing up.
It's so easy to come up with these ideas for side projects, or these desires to make ourselves better. Often though, we get bogged down by the work that goes into these kinds of things.
I decided that when I created this podcast. I wanted to take it easy at first. I would only host it on a free website. I would keep the format as simple as I possibly could. I wouldn't give myself any excuse to miss a single week.
What I've learned in that time, over as of this show 25 episodes, is that I was able to build consistency. Through that consistency, I was able to start building an audience.
Now, granted in this show my audience isn't huge. I'm not signing hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of sponsorships or even selling a merchandise at this point.
Who knows, maybe in a year when I'm listening to this podcast, things might change. But I've learned that letting go of my expectations of perfection allowed me to stay committed to my goal.
It's interesting to see how I've progressed, too. If you compare this episode to my first episode, you'll notice it sounds a little bit more polished. If you compare this episode to my first episode, you might even notice that I have more confidence in my voice.
This is easy to talk through in a podcast format. But it's interesting kind of seeing how it even applies towards design work.
When I was a freelance designer, I would sometimes go days without designing something. It stemmed form being tired, lazy or not wanting to.
Even that's changed for me.
I've begun carrying a sketchbook and my new job requires me to design every day. Again by showing up every day and putting in the work, I've noticed a significant improvement.
The tough part is sticking with it and tracking my progress. Every once in a while, I look back a to remember how far I've come and make sure I recognize I'm making progress.
The whole point for showing up every day was to prove to myself that I could do something and do it well. I have to say, no matter how long this show goes on for, I'm excited about what I've built.
I'm excited about the foundation I've laid out for the future. Success still may be a way off. It might take six months. It might take a year. It might take five years before this really becomes a big deal.
But there's something to be said for the power of showing up every single day. It's hard work but to me, it's worth it.