Veit's Blog

You Can’t Always Be Productive


I haven’t felt truly productive in a long time, not like I used to. Sometimes, when I look back at all the mountains of things I used to build and tinker with I’m in awe of my past self’s productivity, especially because it was so random: I never optimized my workflows, and I just accomplished things by sheer force and discipline.

It’s easy to forget that my life has changed: I work more, I have a wife and a newborn to take care of, I have other hobbies (for a few months early this year I did twelve workouts a week, taking one day off).

Another fact that I refused to acknowledge for the longest time is that the velocity at which I was working simply wasn’t sustainable, at least not with my setup. Over time, I drained the batteries more than I recharged them, and I often feel like it might take a while still to get back to full capacity.

I guess I’m describing burnout, but I’m not ready to accept that yet.

What I’m ready to accept is that there will be times in my life where productivity, no matter by what standard, is not the priority. In many ways, my life is happier and fuller than it ever has been before1 and my priorities lie elsewhere. That comes at a cost, and that has to be okay.

I’m sure at some point I’ll get the itch to stay up late and work on hilariously useless, mind-boggling—well, to me—, brilliantly disturbing side projects. Or not. In the meantime, I’ll live my life, eat good food, and water the plants.


1. Not least because in the last few weeks the Tiny One has started smiling at me, and now regularly wakes up smiling and cooing.