It’s a commitment to lifelong learning, but software developer work-life balance is essential if we are to sustain our pace. Trying to keep up with the rapidly changing IT was like constantly swimming against the tide. Every time I tried to catch up, I got overwhelmed. I burned out more than a few times. I nearly lost my job – not before after being very bluntly told I wasn’t good enough. My girlfriend nearly left me after I kept bring all my work home. She’s now my wife so it worked out ok 🙂
In short, knew I had to find a better way to keep up with the demands of the industry.
How I turned it around
I looked at what people around me were doing better. I asked myself questions like:
How can some people always seem to have the answers, or even ask the right questions?
Why did I feel like I’d done 1 year 10 times rather than 10 years?
How can I expect to move quickly enough to get the job done?
How can I add strings to my bow other than just coding?
I didn’t stop there. I looked at what they did, but wondered how I could do it better, quicker. Eventually I was up to their level. Then I was able to get ahead. I went from hoping I knew what I was doing to knowing. Since then, I have written a book for new starters, and produced an audio course on developer productivity systems.
So what turned things around for me?
Learning quicker gives you work-life balance.
I came to realise that learning how to learn is as important as coding itself. Of course I had to learn hard skills. Integration patterns, RESTFul frameworks, the things that go into production releases. But they are also changing, the meta-skills, now they are the ones to learn.
So I figured there must be plenty of people who feel the same way as me – that it’s hard to keep up, that there must be smarter ways of working. Also, the ability to *retain* useful knowledge for use in multiple contexts seems a good thing to focus on if we are to get up to speed quickly.
So what you can expect from this blog is a scouring of the internet, ideas for improvement, and a brain dump of thoughts on better ways of working.
It won’t just be theory though, where I can I’ll publish how I put these thoughts into practice. Whether that’s with concrete examples and my study plans, is up to you – please let me know what you’d like. I’ll be starting with studying for my AWS Developer Associate exam, hopefully people will get use out of that.
Productivity hacks give you work-life balance.
Software developer work-life balance comes when your coding and planning can stay at work. Even if you work from home. I was able to leave work at work, no more opening up the laptop cos I forgot something after 17:00. For, this you need to master some kind of productivity system. In my case, I’ve been using GTD for years now. It’s a life saver for project management at an individual level. Expect to find some thoughts on this and and other productivity hacks here.
I think as developers we also owe it to ourselves and partners/family to try and get the best out of our day.
I hope that you find this site useful, and positive feedback is always welcomed here.