Story

The Emotional Rollercoaster

Apr 18, 2015

In the past, I’ve written mostly about Cushion progress, but little about the emotional side of building an app. Re-reading a few posts, I realized that I only seem to write when I make considerable progress or when I’m excited about an upcoming feature. I never write about the darker days—when I’m feeling overwhelmed and discouraged.

Bootstrapping shares a similar emotional rollercoaster to freelancing. On an up day, I might have a few dozen signups and, all-of-a-sudden, I feel unstoppable. I start thinking about hiring people and taking on less client work. I look months into the future and make projections on where Cushion will be based on that one good day.

Then, I won’t see a single new signup for an entire week and that impenetrable confidence begins to waver. I start doubting that I’ll ever be able to hire the help I so desperately need. I look to take on new clients because I’m now projecting the future based on this week alone, thinking I’ll be homeless in no time. I feel like no one cares anymore because nobody mentioned Cushion that week.

Like the freelancing rollercoaster, I know these ups and downs don’t go away—I just need to strengthen my ability to handle them. Instead of assuming everything will crumble after a quiet week, I should remind myself about the good things I have going.

For one, Cushion is actually making money and it’s not even out of private beta yet. This is a big deal. It means that people are investing in the app before they can even use it—the idea alone simply resonates with them. I shouldn’t take this lightly. Thanks to their support, I can afford to designate entire weekdays to working on Cushion—not just nights and weekends.

Another positive I often overlook is that I am capable of building Cushion on my own. With 18 years of coding and a design degree under my belt, I know there’s nothing holding me back. It would be nice to have extra help, but there’s no legitimate reason why I couldn’t continue solo until I’m able to bring someone onboard. When the time is right and I can afford a teammate, I can take that next step. Until then, I have nothing blocking me.

Most of all, I need to do this. As soon as I thought up the idea of Cushion and witnessed the overwhelmingly positive reception from others, I knew I had to build it. Not a day goes by where I’m not thinking about Cushion. I shouldn’t take this passion for granted. I should be thankful to even have an idea worth pursuing—let alone one that helps others. I need to remind myself that I’m fortunate to have this opportunity. I can’t wait to see where Cushion takes me.

If it wasn’t obvious, this post was for me. I’ve been feeling down about my work lately and I needed a release. Working alone, it’s easy to keep my thoughts to myself, but that doesn’t help. This did. Thanks for reading.

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Archive

  1. Funding Cushion
    Story
  2. Hiring a Team of Freelancers
    Story
  3. Taking a Real Break From Work
    Story
  4. Slack as a Notification Center
    Dev
  5. Document Your Features
    Story
  6. 300
    Story
  7. Vacations
    Design
  8. Offering Discounts
    Design
  9. Waves of Traffic
    Story
  10. Less Blogging, More Journaling
    Story
  11. Retention Through Useful Features
    Design
  12. The Onboarding Checklist
    Design
  13. Spreading the Word
    Story
  14. From Beta to Launch - The Subdomain
    Dev
  15. From Beta to Launch - Sign up
    Design
  16. From Beta to Launch - Messaging
    Design
  17. Launch
    Story
  18. Authenticating with 3rd Party Services
    Dev
  19. Intro to Integrations
    Design
  20. Inspiration vs Imitation
    Story
  21. The Emotional Rollercoaster
    Story
  22. Designing Project Blocks
    Design
  23. Everything in Increments
    Story
  24. Deleting Your Account
    Design
  25. Designing the Subscription Page
    Design
  26. Rewriting the Timeline
    Dev
  27. Restructuring the Individual Project Page
    Design
  28. Project Blocks
    Story
  29. Redesigning the Homepage
    Design
  30. Multiple Timelines
    Design
  31. Archiving and Estimate Differences
    Design
  32. Multiple Financial Goals
    Design
  33. Zooming in on the Timeline
    Design
  34. Currency
    Dev
  35. Preferences, Accounts, and a Typeface Change
    Design
  36. Sending Out the First Email
    Story
  37. Currency Inputs, Notifications, and Invoice Nets
    Design
  38. Dots and Lines
    Design
  39. Calculating in the Database and Revealing Tendencies
    Dev
  40. Improved Form UX
    Design
  41. Cushion is Online
    Story
  42. Schedule Timeline Patterns
    Design
  43. A Slimmer Schedule Timeline
    Design
  44. The Schedule Timeline
    Design
  45. Plugging in Real Data for the First Time
    Design
  46. Transitions and Project Lists
    Design
  47. Death to Modals
    Design
  48. The Individual Project Page
    Design
  49. Estimated Incomes and Talks with Other Freelancers
    Story
  50. Statuses to Lists and the Paid Beta
    Story
  51. The Timeline
    Story
  52. Invoice Terminology
    Dev
  53. Modal Forms
    Dev
  54. Wiring the Backend to the Frontend
    Dev
  55. Balancing Design and Dev
    Story
  56. Timecop, Monocle, and Vagrant
    Dev
  57. Going with Ruby and Sinatra
    Dev
  58. Ditching local-first and trying out Node.js
    Dev
  59. Switching to AngularJS
    Dev
  60. Building the Table with Vue.js
    Dev
  61. Clients, Projects, and Invoices
    Dev
  62. Introduction
    Story

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