Side projects gardening: Growing projects sustainably

Just like house plants, side projects keep dying because of poor maintenance. How to fix this with a metaphor?

A metaphor I live by is seeing my side projects as a garden. Side projects (just like my plants) keep dying because of low attention.

The question I ask is: how can this metaphor help me grow projects sustainably?

You can only maintain multiple projects at once. But not all plants require the same level of attention.

🌵 Cactus project: grows on its own. Digital assets like books and templates. Maintenance score: low

🌺 Flower project: Maintenance score; high, like communities or saas.

You can increase the size of your garden by

  1. starting more cactus projects instead of flowers

  2. streamline tools and use cases together

Highs and lows are like seasons. Without deep roots (acquisition channels), your project won't survive the winter.

Embrace lifecycles: recondition the death of a project into something else.

Synergy and pollination 🐝: every new project in your garden brings new sunlight. And when you set up cross-promotion, the whole becomes greater than the sum of its part.

For beginners, don't build a farm first. Grow just one project. Then grow a garden. Eventually, with financial security, you can build a farm.

I think it's every entrepreneur's dream to build a garden of projects. And I hope this thread inspires you to create yours.

Created by Ben Issen

Based in Paris, Ben founded Supercreative. With his team, he creates tools and videos to help creatives be more productive. Prior to that, he worked at Webflow and launched a design agency. @ben_issen


Feb 15, 2023

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