Planning And Doing

When should you stop planning and start working? In some projects I was ensnared by analysis paralysis and never got past the planning stage. In others I started writing code far too early and ended up redesigning the project several times. Both cases are obviously not productive and waste a lot of time.

I have been thinking about my process and why I get stuck so often. My fear of not starting seems to be greater than my fear of not finishing. I would often spend an hour or two thinking about how amazing the finished product would be and then jump into the code. Writing code must be more productive than designing code, right?

Being too eager to start working can be just as destructive and counter productive as over-planning. Without a solid plan the project is like a building without a foundation, it’ll sink into the mud when you start construction. Starting with a very detailed and rigid plan will produce a project like a house of cards; it’ll collapse under it’s own weight with the slightest disturbance. The process I’m describing tries to avoid the problems of both extremes by creating a solid plan and reevaluating it after each stage in development. It all starts with a good plan.

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