I am a game dev myself and I struggled with motivation a lot until I understood it. This is my experience how to deal with motivation.
In short, you need discipline instead of 'motivation'.
Start with a simple game, something that wont take you more then 3 months to make. It doesn't have to be complex, or even original. Set short and easy to achieve weekly deadlines and monitor your own progress, maybe 1 enemy or 1 level tile set every few days.
Make working on your game a habit, when you get home start working on it after your meal. It takes about 5 days for a habit to stick so after that it wont feel like your working. After a while it may become weird when your not working on your game in your spare time.
Well, it is not really related to the article the OP mentioned.
Speaking of similar methods largely unrelated to that original question of discipline/motivation, you can take a notebook, outline all days and weeks of the year and use tallies (vertical lines) or even notches or any other symbols to mark every full hour you spent on game dev, not just to keep record of how much time you spent on your project, but also to reinforce your dev habits.
The choice of smaller scope brought up by Thr111 only delineates your goals better and helps you complete your project faster, but it seems more important to monitor your progress and always (always!) keep track of it. It is not about planning it all out and finishing a small project (although that may help your morale), it is about making working a real habit.
Hmm, and only 5 days does not seem enough, just a guess, it will probably be diferent for every person. Oh, just had a quick look around the web, it seems like you need anywhere from 18 to 254 days to form a new habit Huffingtonpost.com so yeah, that also includes the developing habit we talk about.
I find that if I am struggling to get going, if I just forvce myself to start, I get over the hump and start rolling. That first part can be tough though.
I find that having a pint down the pub whilst working on my game on my laptop is a good way of getting through the tough times.
Things to consider:
-Is the scope reasonable? Wanting to do too much, over an infinite period of time will kill motivation. Keep your scope small.
-Are you challenged by the difficulty? Are you solving real problems when you develop the game or is it just a mindless grind? Grinding is bad for motivation.
-Are you learning something from this process? Not learning new stuff and doing the same things over and over kills motivation.
And finally - ask yourself:
-Do I actually think this is fun?
If it's not fun then ofc your motivation will take a big hit. Don't be afraid to just toss away half-finished projects for some better idea.
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