Here’s a useful heuristic for writing better commit messages. Set your commit message template to:
# If applied, this commit will... # Why is this change needed? Prior to this change, # How does it address the issue? This change # Provide links to any relevant tickets, articles or other resources
and you’ll be guided into writing concise commit subjects in the imperative mood — a good practice.
See rule 5 of Chris Beam’s “How to write a commit message” for the inspiration of this tip and more reasoning on the use of the imperative mood.
To do this in Git, save the above content in a file (eg
git config --global commit.template ~/.git_commit_msg.txt
Here’s what this looks like in practice:
Try it! It’s genuinely useful.