Buy your toothpaste when you get there
When you’re heading into a new situation, it’s easy to overpack.
The first time I went to Europe I packed my favorite heavy, long-sleeved flannel shirt, even though the trip was in the middle of summer.
When I started a new coding project, I’d download a whole bunch of libraries just in case.
When I needed to learn a new programming language, I’d buy a bunch of books on it just in case.
When I began leading software teams, I always kept coding just in case I had to jump back into it.
Looking back, it seems that when I enter the unknown, at least half of what I bring along is there “just in case.”
This “just in case” weighs me down, making it hard to move.
It tricks me into thinking I have everything I need, and everything that I will need.
And it takes up space which can be used for the things I need, but now don’t have room for.
Flannel shirts make for a heavy suitcase.
Extra libraries make the final software bigger and take longer to deploy.
Old ideas conflict with approaches that are more useful in this situation.
Traveling light is almost always better. This goes for clothing, libraries, and mental models.
You’ll make better decisions about what you need, and what you want when you arrive.
What did you pack “just in case” that might be getting in the way of what you want now?
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