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

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