3 minute read

Turning Side-Projects into Full-Time Projects

Tony Lea

Turning Side-Projects into Full-Time Projects

As developers, most of us aspire to build a product or side-project that can make us riches 💰 and gives us a life that others envy. But, this is much easier said than done.

Not many people who set off on the entrepreneurial adventure will be victorious because there is no magic formula or "get rich quick" algorithm 🤓. But there are some fundamentals you can follow to give you the best possible chance at succeeding.

In this post, I hope to inspire you with three key ingredients (Persistence, Passion, and Purpose) that you must understand if you want to be successful and turn your side-project into a profit-generating business 💸.

1. Persistence 💪

As with most things in life, we all walk through hills and valleys. There may be days you feel like you are doing remedial bug fixes or writing pointless code. Then, there are other days where you feel like you can build anything, and the web is your canvas waiting for the masterpiece you are about to create.

As you are writing code, building something new, or tracking down a bug, you are also leveling up your game. It's kind of like leveling up in a video game; you must gain all the experience points required to reach your next level before you can have any chance at accomplishing the higher levels.

Don't get discouraged; push forward, and stay positive along your journey. The only time you will fail is if you quit trying. Persistence is key to growing, learning, and succeeding.

2. Passion 👨‍💻

If you want to hold on to the feelings of excitement and feelings of optimism, you have to remember why you started coding in the first place. It's important not to lose focus of your passion and remember the excitement you felt when you learned or built something new, use that as motivation to overcome any speed bumps ahead.

When you feel passionate about a particular area, make sure to seek that out in full force because passion is the fuel behind many great creations.

It's also important to know that you will not be passionate about everything you work on, but you may have to do it anyway. You may uncover new passions you never knew you had, but don't ever get discouraged if you have to work on something you are not super passionate about. This may be a valley you have to go through to reach the hill you are looking forward to climbing.

3. Purpose

The money you make does not define you as a developer. Your true identity is in the code you write and the things you build. If you pour passion and love into your projects, money will eventually follow. It's better to be a developer who has fun and makes less than the developer who hates his work and makes more.

Remember to be mindful of why you are doing what you are doing. If the end goal is to only "make money," you have probably masked your purpose so much that it is no longer visible.

Hold on to the things that make you excited about waking up and the things that make you excited about creating. Remember why you started coding and programming in the first place. Get in touch with your inner-geek and re-discover your purpose for doing what you do.

Your purpose should be something that makes you feel great about doing day-in and day-out. If you truly love to code, maybe your purpose is to teach another generation how fun it can be to code.

Learning what your purpose is and how you can fulfill it is all part of the journey, so make sure to keep this in mind as you continue to grow, build, and create.


We all want to create something great, and it's important to remember that greatness takes time. If you are patient, things will begin to unfold, and eventually, you will find yourself standing at the top of a mountain, looking down at your masterpiece.

Here is a crucial thing to remember. If you do the work others aren't willing to do; eventually, you will be able to do the things others aren't able to do.

I hope this inspires you to push forward, create side-projects, and enjoy the life of being a developer. 🚀