How do I stay motivated as a solo indie developer.

When I just started my full time solo indie developer journey. I had huge problems with motivation and work discipline. I’ve invested a lot of time reading about best solutions for that problem. But to find approach that works for me, I had to go against most of the common wisdom in the field.

My current approach combines freedom and discipline in a way that works well for me and served me well for more than 4 years.

My approach I quite simple. I decide when to work, but I track my work time and my goal is to work 35-hour week. If I work more, time gets added to my time bank and it can be used to work less at some other week. If I work less, negative number of hours goes to my bank and eats from what is there. And yes, sometimes I have negative number there, so I get incentive to work more than 35 hrs. This method gives me enough freedom to work and not work when I feel like it. But it does provide a serious penalty for not hitting that mark and creates good incentive to hit it.

On my previous project the goal was 40-hour week, but those projects had more level design, while current one requires more programming. And programming is much more draining for me, that’s why I had to make that adjustment.

I use Toggl to track my time and Asana for task management. My task management habits are also skewed towards freedom.