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StokeDaSoul R5

"The premise behind StokeDaSoul is simply: to be stoked!"

As I copied-and-pasted the above into the new mission statement page; as I struggled to find the energy to work on Revision 5 of StokeDaSoul; as the R5 project dragged on for a year getting no closer to a finish - I realized, very simply: I was not stoked.*

I felt no 'exhilaration' for the creative design process. Coding the website brought about zero 'excitement'. 'A euphoric state of mind' is the last thing that would describe my being. It took my thick head a year to realize StokeDaSoul R5 was languishing, crashing on the sharp rocks of despair. Not to be overly dramatic, well, actually to be overly dramatic, I was not stoked!

Not being stoked while building a website whose premise is to be stoked will not work. Something needed to change. That something was me. The late night epiphany - "I'm not stoked about this project" - had me thinking: what IS the point of this project? Going back to the original sentence opener for StokeDaSoul's mission statement helped find the project's objectives. First and foremost was to be stoked – excited, exhilarated, in a euphoric state of mind. But the subtle message was simplicity.

Removing unnecessary and cluttering aspects of the old design would simplify the users’ experience. The simple design would put the emphasis back on the content. Elegant simplicity would be the driving theme during the design, development and content creation processes.

As screen mockups took shape, I found that constantly refering back to the project objectives kept my over active brain in check. "Is this design simple?" "Does it highlight content?" As mockups turned into tasks, I again referred back to the project objectives to keep "scope creep" in check. "Does this task promote simplicity?" "Does it enhance the content?" As the tasks list grew, I used the objectives to prioritize them. Simple.

Project plans tend to get filled out as a required mundane task. So much useless paperwork. However, by using the project plan as a tool, I found the guide to keep me on course to completion - finally. By defining, really defining the aspects of the project - objectives, goals, tasks and priorities – I found that the R5 project was again moving. I’m stoked to be here at the release. Please enjoy.


* The length, complexity and rambling nature of this sentence is a metaphor for the length, complexity and rambling nature of what the original project metastasized into. The fact that I couldn't just let it stand on its own (I really tried) says something; although, I'm not sure what. But, I know, my dear friend "Bee" would say: you have issues. And speaking of my dear friend... Bee, thanks for the encouragement and support!


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Stoked! [stokt]:

adjective: exhilarated, excited, euphoric state of mind...
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