Being consistent is really fucking hard

However it’s often the difference between success and failure

I wrote this post as part of my 30-day writing challenge, where I attempted to write one new article every day.


Being consistent is one of the hallmarks of successful entrepreneurs. They’re able to commit to something, and continue to do it, even if they don’t see immediate rewards.

When I spoke to Tobias van Schneider during one of The Side Project Accelerator mentor sessions, he said that he wrote something like 120 blog posts last year.

Tobias doesn’t advertise on his blog and he certainly didn’t get paid for each of these posts or something like that. He believed that if he consistently produced amazing content for his audience, it would eventually pay off for him, one way or another.

I believe that’s true as well, so I try to produce content consistently for my audience. About two months ago we decided to be consistent with the Hacking UI podcast and produce a new episode every week. We did this in the past with the newsletter, which worked very well, and now I committed to be consistent with my own blogging.

Well being consistent is really fucking hard because there’s no immediate reward on the time and effort that I’m investing. I have to always believe that my work will pay off, but I don’t know when that will be.

I’m writing this article at the end of a long, long day. I want nothing more than to close my computer and go to sleep, but if I don’t publish an article today then I fail.

Let me share with you the inner dialogue I just had, and how I convinced myself to remain consistent and keep going.

David vs. his conscience

David: I just want to hang out with my friends and do fun stuff, but I haven’t wrote my article for today yet. Fuck me. This is going to be really fucking hard. Do I have to do it? Will this hard work even pay off?

Conscience: You say you want to become a better writer, grow your audience and have a successful business, no?

David: Umm, yea.

Conscience: So what if I told you that if you keep this up for a week straight then you’ll become a world famous writer and your business will crush it?

David: Wow, that’s amazing! Conscience, you’re the best! I can easily be consistent for a week and I can make whatever sacrifices I need to.

Conscience: Whoah, slow down there tiger. I didn’t say it would happen, I just asked you how you would feel if it happened. Jeez, you’re more gullible than I thought. But I’m glad to see that you’re willing to put in a week of hard work, you fucking pansy (for some reason my conscience is a mix of Danny Devito and the trainer in Rocky).

Ok, let’s try this again. What would you say if I told you that after you deliver consistently for a month you’ll reap those rewards?

David: A month? OK that will be tough. Being consistent for a month means I’ll miss out on some fun stuff and probably have some pretty difficult times. But it’s still only a month, and after that I’ll be a fucking King. OK I can do a month.

Conscience: Kids today, you’re all a bunch of pussies. When I was a kid-

David: Wait, aren’t you the same age as me?

Conscience: That’s besides the point. Anyway, OK so you’ll do it for a month. How about a year? Can you be consistent for a full 365 days?

David: Don’t fuck with me conscience. If I work hard for 365 days straight, then at the end you promise that I’ll achieve my goals? OK I’m in.

Conscience: You don’t get it, you idiot! I‘m not promising you anything. I’m just proving to you that you’re willing to go pretty far for these goals, so don’t give up after only three days!

It gets easier

I don’t know that I will achieve every one of my goals by the end of this challenge. I don’t even know if that will happen in a year. But I do know that if I’m consistent and push through, it will happen eventually.

This is a tough lesson, and I have to constantly remind myself about it. The good news is, that after a while of doing something consistently, it becomes routine, and much easier to carry out.

It was this way with the Hacking UI newsletter. At the beginning it was miserable to send out a new issue each week. To find and curate all of the links, to construct the HTML, to put everything into MailChimp and to proofread it, and to test the email. Jeez, it was torture. But we decided that we were going to send it out every week and we committed to our audience to do so. We couldn’t let them down, and 142 issues later we’ve kept that promise every single week.

Right now it’s really tough for me to write a new article every day, but I’m confident that it will get easier if I keep it up. I’m also confident that I will improve my writing and grow my audience.

Just please, oh please let it happen soon.


David Tintner is one of the founders of The Side Project Accelerator, a program in which he teaches exactly how to build your personal brand, become a thought leader and practice audience driven product development. You also become a member for life of an exclusive community and get access to members-only mentor sessions, Q&A sessions and bonus material.

If that sounds like something that you’d enjoy, registration for the second batch opens soon and you can sign up for the waiting list.