In a rut? Write it down!

Sometimes we all struggle with motivation for a ticket, or feel like we aren’t making enough progress on it. I realized two sprints ago that one really good way to help for me was to create a card on Trello and write down the next few steps

I took it a step further and got a paper notebook and it works wonders! Take a pen, a blank page and whenever you feel stuck on a task, write it down. Write down the next steps, maybe just doodle. This does two things: Let your mind take a break & see things from a new perspective. It also seems to strangely help with motivation as you see the big list of ‘next steps’ getting ticked off one by one. And the freedom of paper lets you doodle, mindmap, draw a table, whatever. So much better than Trello!


Thats a good one it does help, I have been stuck on few task the only thing that helps me is a good walk and putting things down whiteboard.

There is also something called as “Make a cup of tea” which also was pointed in onboarding course as “doing laundry”.

When you are stuck and you are straining yourself more than normal, you should take a break. Do something very unrelated and don’t force yourself to think about the problem, because sometimes we look so closely that we are not able to see the bigger picture.

This has helped me time and again to gain perspective and help to analyze things better. I didn’t do a lot of these in past some weeks and I did went through some roungh patches.


Writing is a great suggestion for breaking mental blocks! It’s especially hard when working remotely, because most of us don’t have someone around to talk through our blockers with.

And yep, I’m also a fan of the powers of tea… :tea:


I’ve read about this effect in a book on procrastinology (for those who know Russian — “Jedi Techniques”, Max Dorofeev, it’s great).

It’s also important for the first step in your list to contain a simple call to specific action instead of description of what needs to be done. Like “Search for appropriate UI component on github” instead of “Implement first view: profile”.

Also, I have a feeling that creating a draft pull request before starting any programming can also help, but didn’t try this myself yet.

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