Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Preparing For Change and the Mistakes We Make

The Parallels of Recovery and New Features 

As we are working on the new features of recoveryBox (features that our users have asked us to implement that would aid in their recovery), it's interesting to note that as a team we have come up with observations that you might find interesting and how it parallels recovery.

In fact, these are lessons that really apply to just about anything!

  • If it's something that I am asking for - perhaps others can benefit from it as well.  I think that's actually the point of support groups too -- if I'm going through it, then perhaps others have my same experiences and perhaps I can gain from their journey.
  • It takes courage! Not everyone thinks about asking for features..rather many jump to criticism. But what I tell anyone who writes to me...this app is truly the first of it's kind and it's based on the input from many different counselors and behavior modification systems. And so, there is a chance that what you need might not be a part of them app, or perhaps it's there but you just don't know how to use it. So sending an email is a great way to ask for help. And like the road to recovery, instead of getting down on how the system doesn't always work, ask for help!  There are so many willing to help you out.
  • We all make mistakes!!  Currently I am working on fixing bugs that either I have found in recoveryBox or that have been brought to my attention. Being the person that I am, I hate to make mistakes..not because of pride but rather because I'm afraid to let others down.  And during my own journey I have learned that I am NOT perfect, I have to give myself room to be human and make mistakes. Where we grow as a person, is when we learn from our mistakes.
  • Preparation is KEY! As part of a new recoveryBox version, I am mapping out app the places that I have to make changes. This one feature specifically, while a seemingly small request really touches on the heart of the app and therefore we need to make a lot of changes. In doing so, we have to look at our existing code, plan for the changes we need to make and then test test test!  We want to be prepared so that when we make a change we can support it well.  In recovery, we must prepare for the changes we need to make. Trying to give up drinking while running with the same crowd won't do it. Trying to give up viewing pornography while not making plans to protect your eyes is foolish. If we want to be successful, we must step back, analyze the situation and then make plans.
  • We don't always get what we want! Making changes to recoveryBox based on user requests is exciting because it means there is a huge opportunity to help others. But, there are times when my team has to make difficult decisions such as "How many people have requested this feature?", "How much time will this take to develop?", "Is this truly the best direction for recoveryBox?", "What other demands do I see coming down the road from Apple that I need to implement in order to keep recoveryBox in the store?", "When/if is the right time to try and create the same app in android land?" These really are difficult decisions to make and unfortunately since my team is REALLY small, we can't always satisfy every request.  And in recovery, we don't always get what we want either. Not every relationship is going to be reconciled because of past baggage.  But what we need to remember is - "DID I TRY MY BEST?" and if the answer is yes - then we must learn to accept and move on.
If you haven't already tried recoveryBox, perhaps it's a tool that can get you going in the right direction toward your sobriety. And hopefully the new version will be in the Apple store within a few weeks more!