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Learning Backend WebDev, Log #6 - Focus Followup

Today, I did not quite care how much progress I made.
Instead I focussed on getting my focus periods in, like I described yesterday.

It’s about an hour earlier than when I usually call it a day.
And yet, now that I am checking, I have ‘worked’ fewer actual hours than usual.
And I have gotten a bit of exercise and housework done too!
(This does not usually happen on a normal study day)

What I did

  • Set a timer for 30 minutes.
  • Got to work. Butt in seat.
  • If I got distracted, I’d reset the timer to 30 minutes and start again. The aborted session would not count.
  • Tried to be patient with myself. Realised that doing things over, was not really a negative, if it meant that in the long run I’d be able to focus better.

How I fared

  • I did six, 30 minute sessions of Django.
  • I did three, 30 minute sessions of Postgres.
  • Don’t think I could have lasted this long, if it was just Django.
  • Had to scratch and start over six times.
  • Ended up doing close to 4 and a half hours of focussed Deep Work.

What I learnt

  • Learnt about tables in Postgres and did basic commands with a single table
  • Learnt about forms in Django and how they are built and all the niceties Django provides.
  • Worked through some exercises in Django, where I built forms and then hooked it up to models using Views.
  • Then learnt just how much time and effort Django saves me by using generic ClassViews.
  • Also got into a rhythm of doing stuff, blowing Django up, looking at the error, figuring it out and then going on the next blowup.

What I feel

  • Did a whole day today, after yesterday’s run
  • Tired, but not exhausted.
  • Still feel energetic enough to write this blog post
  • Actually love this time, when I can sit peacefully and write. All I need now, to complete this setting is a glass of cheap Goan port.
  • I don’t feel rushed.
  • At four and a half hours, it might feel like I spent less time, but I got much more done than I do in a eight hour day. I realise that the tiny rest periods in between are doing me good. The first few breaks, I kept checking all my feeds. By afternoon, I had settled down to either doing small chores or just enjoying the solitude as I did gentle physical stretches

If I can do 30 minute stretches at will this week, I’ll increase them to 45 minutes next week.
Here’s to hoping, this is a sustainable way to focus and learn lots daily.


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