At the start of 2016, I made one New Year's Resolution, and that was to do something creative every week, which usually ended up being how I spent my Saturdays. The goal was to rediscover some creative hobbies and to get myself away from the computer - mostly. I did do some writing and some music making, and I did end up doing a couple of small hobby apps for fun, but that still felt very different than coding for work.
The result: A year later and I have stuck to it for 52 weeks straight. I've made some cool things and greatly improved my mental health and overall happiness.
Here's What I Made:
Here's What I Learned:
- Making things makes me happy. Hobbies away from the computer greatly improve my overall happiness.
- There's a lot that I want to do that I'm not very good at. Letting go of the "it has to be perfect" mentality and enjoying the learning and experimentation process for what it is is very valuable.
- There's a lot that I am good at and doing those things more often is very rewarding.
- Hot glue guns are hot, soldering irons are even hotter.
- Human flesh does not react well to hot things.
- The key to maintaining discipline for me seems to be reducing friction: organize tools, set aside dedicated time to work on things, etc.
- I enjoy documenting and examining the process almost as much as the making, itself (as evidenced by my numerous blog posts from the past year).
- Losing myself in a project for several hours is very relaxing and therapeutic.
- Making something physical that I can hold and turn over in my hands is deeply satisfying in a way that writing code or producing something digitally is not.
- I should really start purchasing X-Acto knife blades in bulk.
I've sort of made this making thing a habit at this point. I don't see any reason to stop now! I plan to continue this for the foreseeable future.
I got a resin casting kit for Christmas.