I Nearly Gave Up. The Sunk Cost Fallacy Kept Me In It.

I Nearly Gave Up. The Sunk Cost Fallacy Kept Me In It.

10AM – IT’S CODE CUTTING TIME. Todd Terje is playing loud. I’m writing code for a handyman lawn care app so that handymen lawn mowing providers can register to make more money.

10:05AM. Code not working. Don’t know why. The stupid thing should just work.

MIDDAY. No progress. I know I’m out of my league. I huff in frustration.

1PM.  Reddit. Facebook. Twitter. Reddit. Facebook. Reddit. They are opened in a horrid cyclic battle against procrastination. I’m losing.

2PM. It’s lunch time and I haven’t even eaten breakfast. My girl (Toni) suggests we eat out. I enjoy the food in Castro, San Francisco but all I can think about is this one freaking line of code that isn’t working.

3PM. Music is off now. I’m even further behind than when I started.

5PM. 7 hours in and I still haven’t written this one line of damned code. Show’em how I feel Dwight.

Show'em how I feel, Dwight

Show’em how I feel, Dwight

6PM. It’s cold, but all I can feel is the heat. Toni is concerned.

7PM. 10 hours in and I’m ready to drop a bombshell on co-founder, Andrea.

Dear Andrea,
I’m quitting the handyman lawn care business.

Sunk Cost Fallacy

8PM. Have you ever heard of the sunk cost fallacy? It’s when investors believe that further investment is needed so that the money already invested won’t be lost, not taking into consideration the additional losses involved in the further investment.

I can’t bare to think about the lost 11 hours so I try a bit longer. The sunk-cost fallacy is keeping me in it.

9PM. I’ve been beaten. Good game.

Reward for Perseverance9:30PM. Victory.
Job’s done.
I can’t believe it.
It hurts to admit it took 11+hours to write one line of code when it’ll take 7 seconds next time.

Toni cheerfully pours a strong spiced rum. Thanks! xo.

Music plays.

Lessons Learned

1. Without perseverance, this OddJob handyman GreenSocks lawn care startup won’t wouldn’t exist.
2. A little bit of sunk-cost fallacy can sometimes be a saviour.

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