Captain’s log, stardate 20220129

Repetition

Longtime friend-of-the-list Ilie Pandia wrote in to ask (shared with permission):

Personal question: do you ever get frustrated with having to answer the same questions over and over again? And if so, how do you deal with it? Thanks!

Good question!

I recall once reading a quote that went something like:

“If you want to make a difference, prepare to repeat yourself for ten years.”

It might’ve been the 37Signals folks, but I can’t find it. Who knows? Maybe I dreamed it.

Anyways…

This quote makes sense to me. I think it’s fairly unlikely to say something so clear and true that people are changed for the better after hearing it once. Or even a hundred times.

So…

When I decided to rid the world of hourly billing, I knew I’d be repeating myself for many MANY years.

This DOESN’T mean that I never get frustrated or annoyed explaining something for the 1000th time.

What it DOES mean is that when I get frustrated, I am self-aware enough to I ask myself:

“Why am I getting frustrated in this particular case?”

…instead of thinking:

“This isn’t working and I should give up!”

Which is the beauty of having a mission that you’re committed to.

It helps you get through the frustrating days.

Yours,

—J

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