How did it get so late so soon?

by Shivam Dixit — on  ,  ,  , 

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Another year is about to end and yet it seems it has just started. At the start of 2015, I had ambitious plans for the year. A lot of things to do, a plethora of resolutions, and a heart brimming with optimism. The year is about to conclude and I’m afraid that I’m far from my plans. I had fallen in the trap of planning fallacy.

Daniel Kahneman describes planning fallacy as follows:

A phenomenon in which predictions about how much time will be needed to complete a future task display an optimism bias

As Rolf Dobelli clearly points out in his book Art of thinking clearly that we tend to ignore external factors, and overestimate internal factors when planning out things. That’s exactly what I did when I planned for the year 2015, and laid the foundations of planning fallacy.

The journey of 2015 was bumpy, it was full of ups-and-downs. I stepped into a professional world, met new people, made good friends, learned cool things. However I was significantly diverted from one of the goals – open source contributions.

My open source journey started with my participation in Google Summer Of Code ‘14. I contributed to many popular open source projects at that time. I had a GitHub commit streak of more than 200 days. Open source was a routine activity back then. Things changed since I started my full time job. It was difficult to take out time for open source activities. I always planned it for the next day. Alas, tomorrow never comes!

This is how my public contribution history looks now (personal account):

Github-personal

And the contribution history of private repositories (work account):

Github-personal

I miss contributing to open source projects. It’s not that I don’t like my new work, in fact I love it, love it more than anything. It’s challenging and always a lot of learning is involved. But I miss the IRC chats, long discussions on public mailing lists, and the feeling of your patch being accepted (the BEST feeling ever).

With 2015 setting down, here I am, writing this post, and making another set of new year resolutions. But this time with a change. With a plan to not loose focus and to keep things simple. This time I’m not going to repeat my mistake of creating a mammoth list. I will just limit it to four points:

  • One commit a day – I will make at-least one public contribution daily. After all, one commit a day keeps the doctor away ;-)

  • Learn a new programming language – Starting from this year onwards I’ll learn a new programming language every year. This year it will be one of Elixir, Go, or Ruby.

  • One blog post every month – Another thing which I messed up in 2015. At that time I planned to write a post ever week, bullshit!

  • Get fit – Somehow the most important thing has has always been on a low priority for me. But this time it will change.

If you ever find me violating any of the above in 2016, just hit me hard. And I promise I’ll treat you.

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