Motivation via "Cook & Code Night"

April 26, 2013

Motivation during the Long Haul

It’s hard maintaining motivation to keep attacking a project over a long period of time. Here’s one thing we did to overcome that. Maybe you’ll find it useful.

Cook & Code Night

For the last nine months or so, my longtime friend Justen and I have been using our spare time to build up an initial version of a product that we’re intending to turn into a business. We have worked on it a long time (longer than we expected), but the angle that we’re tackling the market requires a rather complex software and we want to make sure it’s excellent. We’ve talked to our initial customers and we know we’re on the right track since everyone is excited about it. Getting that feedback has given us a lot of motivation. We haven’t always had the same drive as we do now though.

Back around December we were clearly losing steam on the project. We didn’t have something worthwhile to show our customers and it seemed like there was still a lot of work to do. We came up with a plan that’s easily been one of the biggest factors in getting us out of that slump to where we are now: “Cook & Code Night”. It’s a really simple idea. As often as possible, we’d alternate going to each other’s house, cooking new and interesting food for each other, and dedicating the rest of the night to working on the website.

Why It’s Great

C&C night has made these evenings into something we could look forward to– We know that we get to try some new and delicious food (and half the time we don’t even have to cook it!), it gives us more to talk about (cooking strategies in general), and also opens up a lot of time to discuss plans for the website and to actually get some work done. We always talk about what we actually accomplished at the end of the night.

Something Noteworthy

Last year we talked to a VC to get a little more perspective about what we were getting ourselves into. We were both surprised when the very first question he had for us was “What relationship do you have with your cofounder?” It makes a lot of sense though. I suppose that not every pair of cofounders working on something have the sort of relationship to be able to pull something like Cook & Code nights off consistantly.

Have you ever found yourself in a similar situation? What have you done to overcome lack of motivation?

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