Today, I choose to be thankful


I felt frustrated this week: with my consulting work, with my iOS projects, with my schedule — and it showed.

Sometimes when I feel that way, I focus on the frustrations. But, “that way madness lies, let me shun that”.


Today I choose to focus on what I have, on what I *can* do, on what is possible.

Today, I choose to be thankful.

Amazing tools

I am thankful that I live in a time where there is so much creative potential sitting here on my desk. It amazes me to think that I have access to literally (really!) everything I need to more than provide for my family’s needs, to pursue a career that invigorates me, to make the bold attempt to follow my dreams.

I have more information in the electronic books, documentation, and other notes sitting on my laptop right now than was available anywhere when I first started programming.

Through a chunk of electronics and plastic smaller than my thumb, I have wireless access to more useful information than I could digest in a dozen lifetimes.

Sitting on my hard drive are interpreters, editors, and compilers that would be the envy of the world during the first three decades of computing history.

And on some days, I am so nonchalant about it all that I am like a spoiled prince who views the entire kingdom as his playground and birthright.

But, today, I choose to be thankful for my tools.

Incredible community

I am thankful that I am surrounded by thousands of creative individuals who are willing to freely share what they have learned through months and years of painstaking work. Somewhere out there right now, someone is working on a tool, an article, or an application that in the coming weeks will be made public and ease my workload by an order of magnitude. And they will ask nothing in return.

This year thousands of talented individuals will share vital technical information with their competitors through books, blogs, and conferences without any direct economic return.

And on some days, I take this community of friends, peers, and experts for granted.

But, today, I choose to be thankful for the community of developers who freely share with me.

Supportive family

I am thankful for a wife who supports me even though she doesn’t grok what I do at all. When I sit and think for hours, or bury myself into my work late into the night — she understands. When I get stuck or worried, she helps me work through my frustrations. When I am just plain weird, she still loves me.

I am thankful for four grown children who accept the geekiness of their dad, who show interest in those arcane details I sometimes bring to the dinner table, and who bring me more joy than they know.

And on some days, I assume that they will always be there for me.

But, today, I choose to be thankful for my family.

Loving God

I am thankful for a God who loves me unconditionally, and has created this wonderful world to explore.

It is a privilege to dive into the myriad details of this world and realize that every question that gets answered opens up dozens more. The depth and intricacy of life, the universe, and everything reminds me of how great He is, and how much I still have to learn.

And on some days, I selfishly acknowledge no one outside my own mind.

But, today, I choose to be thankful for my creator.

Think on these things

When you get frustrated by thorny technical problems, by difficult coworkers, or even personal struggles, I encourage you to make your own list of good things, and to think on those things.

You might be surprised how much good it will do you.

As an indie developer, one of the best things you can do is to find like-minded developers that will provide encouragement and motivation while pursuing a commitment. A great collection of indie iOS developers have helped me stay on track, most of them are either developers associated with iDevBlogADay, or those I have met through the 360iDev conferences. If you can make it to Austin in November, I highly recommend it for its content, the friendships you’ll develop, and the passion it will bring to your iOS development.

Also, here is a little more information about me, Doug Sjoquist, and how I came to my current place in life. You should follow me on twitter and subscribe to my blog. Have a great day!