Staying Motivated as an Indie Developer
How’s your home space looking with having to redecorate and prepare for the winter? If you’re like me then, regular house chores and even the smallest distractions can throw you from your work groove, leading you to lose motivation.
Working as an Indie game developer it’s common to lose motivation or have doubts about your work. It’s a familiarity that all forms of content creators can relate to. In addition, the more time you invest in your pursuits, the more you start finding a continuous stream of things you want to add or improve. Pursuing a passion becomes a full time job that ends up requiring more hours than the standard work week, which can be exhausting.
Here’s some of my favorite advice for maintaining my motivation:
Take time to clarify your ‘Why’ and vision
A clear reasoning for completing your goal can act as a solid foundation for motivation. The more meaning you attach to your work, the more willing you are to intrinsically drive yourself to get it done.
While having a vision assists you in maintaining focus on what’s important to accomplishing your goal instead of spending time on low-value tasks that will just drain your energy.
Take notes on EVERYTHING.
People underestimate the amount of amazing ideas they let go of every day just because they didn’t write it down. Writing notes lets you keep track of these ideas, practices mindfulness, can moderate your thoughts, and allows you to easily return to your thought flow.
Figure out a workflow and maintain it.
I personally recommend getting all your snacks and drinks before you start working so that you can minimize the amount of times you get out of your seat as much as possible.
Cut off all distractions.
A key element in maintaining your workflow is cutting of as many distractions as possible from your work environment. Every distractions breaks your workflow which makes it hard to get back on track like running and stopping every 5 minutes, you drain your energy a lot faster.
Try using headphones and utilizing strategic music playlists to hone your concentration.
Consider and change the work environment
Similar to the workflow advice, your environment has a major impact on your productivity levels. It’s best to opt for an environment that you can associate with work and that is separated from potential distractions.
For instance, you can consider working at a coworking space, coffee shop or just getting out into the world.
Set milestones for your goals
When you’re the one experiencing your life and work progress everyday, you’re not aware of every incremental improvement you complete. In contrast, a friend that finally sees you after 6 months might say that you’ve changed drastically. Setting milestones allows you to both keep yourself accountable and on a timeline but also lets you see how far you’ve come.
Watch motivational videos or listen to meditations
Sometimes if nothing else works then you just need a really good pep talk to get things your spirits up. Not all of us have access to a life coach, friend or family member that can give us a good motivational speech but thankfully, the internet provides many motivational speeches, videos and meditations for free.
Take a break
When the going gets tough and all these methods don’t work then, I tend to opt for a break or mini vacation. This could be anything from just a short walk, reading or getting some exercise in. Not only are breaks good to reset your energy levels and focus but they allow you to think of something outside of work which can lead to a new creative idea in itself.
Hopefully, this advice will prove helpful for you in the future while pursuing not only indie game development but also your personal goals. I wish you the best of luck in your own endeavor and just remember that you’re not alone in how you feel!