The Difference Between a Successful Person and a Non-successful Person

Almost a month ago, I asked what’s the biggest problem you are facing in game development right now? There were plenty of answers and one answer was ‘time’. Since ‘time’ is such an universal problem, I decided to ponder this bit more.

The more I thought about it, the better I understood that ‘time’ was not actually a problem. I personally thought that one of my biggest problems is ‘time’, but I realized that it’s not actually the problem.

I was reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad 2 (fine book by the way) and noticed a sentence that was related to this challenge. Even when you have little time to use, this one tip applies. I think that the difference between a successful person and a non-successful person is this: “it’s what they do in their spare time”.

Think about it a bit. We all have our hobbies and interest, but in the end it’s not ‘time’ that is problem for us. It’s how you use that time. It’s easy to take a beer and sit on a sofa watching TV. It’s easy to find time and go out with friends. It’s easy to find time for fun hobbies. It’s easy to surf in the net rather than working on your project. And yet we keep saying that ‘time is my problem’. I’m not saying you should abandon everything else in your life and just concentrate building your business or working on your game – that would be quite stupid actually. I’m simply saying that you can find time, if you really want.

It all boils down to the ability to delay gratification. It’s the ability to concentrate on what’s important and where you want to go. That’s the solution.

Juuso Hietalahti


  1. @Jake: I haven’t read that one… I suppose I could write a post about what I have ini my bookshelf.

    I’ll check that book.

    @Derek: sounds really good, I encourage you to finish that project soon – the sooner the better!

  2. Yeah I realised a while ago that to make games properly you have to be full-time. Also if you work at home you think about the project all the time and can nip in your “office” and do a bit more work when the fancy takes you. Although in my case I have (choose) to juggle this with family commitments. One thing that helped was I got rid of my TV license and SKY 18 months ago.

    Juuso: Hey you seem to read similar books to me. Have you read Secrets of the Millionaire Mind yet by T. Harv Ecker? I totally recommend it. Even if you only implement the multiple 10% system of money management, you’ll have done something very good.

    Also as an Aikido instructor, I hear all sorts of excuses why people miss a lesson sometimes. One classic is “I had to do some a) work, b) school/uni work c) admin d) other crap” but really the Aikido lesson is only 2 hours in a week so it seems like bad organisation if you can find the time on another day (or even on the same day) to do the other stuff to free up your time for Aikido. Why free up your time for Aikido? Well it’s a regular fitness thing for a start and anyone who exercises regularly will know the dangers of missing a few sessions with some lame excuse. Also the very act of freeing up your time for Aikido means you are learning better time management and can free up your time for other things like working on your home business instead of watching TV or getting drunk (not saying those are bad things, but the frequency is important). Finally Aikido is also a great way to dynamically relax and focus on your spiritual side so that you can go back to your work/skill/craft and reapply yourself with vigour.

  3. Yeah, I know my productivity will increase dramatically if I go part time but I’d like to save up a few grand before doing so, just in case my position should fall through or if something should come up.

  4. That is where I was a year ago, making gradual progress but not at a sufficient rate. Holding down a full-time job and working on my project spare time was wearing me out. I decided to make a bigger commitment so last May I went down to a four day week. That showed me the potential and in January I went down to a three day week and from the beginning of this month a two day week!

    With each increase in time available to my project, ScreenRest, my productivity and output quality has risen non-linear. Sure I have taken a financial risk, but I’m planning to go into closed beta next week and loving it, plotting my way out of the ‘E’ Quadrant (for those who have read the book).

    So I say, “Go for it.”

  5. I have a normal day job, I devote as much of my spare time to my project without alienating the people around me. In my case there just isn’t enough free time for me to sit down and do what I want to for my project. I’m thinking about going from full time to part time so that I can devote more time to development.

Comments are closed.