I felt it a lot, the guilt of not working hard enough on my presentation before the defense, especially after submission of the application while waiting for the results to come in. It took a few weeks to know if we are going to defend our crazy design and during that time i’ve probably put 2% effort in average of the amount of effort I put when we worked on the design.
If you are in that stage you probably read many blogs about VCDX journey by now, many are saying to start working on the presentation a minute after you submitted the application and not to wait for the results.
This is indeed a precious time that might be considered “gone to waste” if not used, i can imagine that this approach might work for some but allow me to offer a different perspective. The fact is you have worked on your design vigorously for several months, hopefully that’s enough time to get you to know your design in a good level, maybe not everything by heart but enough to get you going with the presentation. While preparing the application I emptied a lot of my energy tanks in a concentrated effort towards the deadline, I understandably felt an energy drop at that point.
When working in a team creativity is what I bring to the table, to boost up my creativity levels I need to love what I’m doing and enjoy it, it also helps to read books (real books not just tech stuff) & most importantly a sense of purpose. That is very hard to achieve while WAITING for the invite for the defense.
In my opinion it is perfectly fine to take a rest while waiting for the invite. Some other VCDXs might say it is blasphemy for me to say this but I disagree. That’s because every person has its own experience but also because once you will get the invite you will accelerate from 0-100 in 3 seconds working on your presentation/doing mocks 24X7.
My view is that there is limited amount of times a person can do the same thing in a high level of intensity before that person “burns out”, me and Agustin didn’t want that to happen to us a week before the defense.
My advice is, If you’re like me: manage your time, work slowly on your presentation but mostly get your creativity juices going. Also very important to spend time with your family, the last few weeks before submission were probably very intense for them as well.
If you feel a bit guilty, that’s OK too 🙂
Folks who mix and use creativity in IT work might also enjoy reading @vmiss33 ‘s very good article “The V in creativity”