Have you ever found yourself busy, but unproductive at the same time? Have you ever found your self going full speed, but feeling little success and no balance?
After 2016, I took some time to evaluate my goals. I was impressed with the list I was able to construct and impressed with the progress I had made in my coding skills, my further involvement in the tech community, and my unshaken determination to try new things. However, something was off.
By December 2016 and a little bit into January 2017, I felt unbalanced and did not feel like myself. When talking to new people at Meetups, I started to feel like I was saying things people wanted to hear, or what I should be saying rather than anything from the heart. I was coding because I knew I needed to continue coding to get a job, but not because I was solving problems I was curious about. Coding had become a duty. Even worse than this, I had put so much effort into Career Growth, that I had let all other aspects of myself and my life slide. I felt disconnected from friends and family. After so many hours sitting at a desk and not moving for fear of Not Working on Career Growth, for the first time in my life I felt constant back pain. I was eating quick meals instead of good foods. Lastly, I was stifling other areas of creativity and curiosity that have always made me feel whole, in hopes that the additional energy towards Career would pay off. In some ways that effort paid off, but in others it left me feeling 1 dimensional and not myself.
I am the kind of person who feels whole when I live a life full of variety, creativity, exploration, and genuine connections with others.
I spent February moving the needle back, temporarily halting some coding goals to make sure that I can be the best version of myself for my goals, in my relationships, and in in the long run. Before, I had mistakenly thought, “Oh, I get back into exercise practice when I get a great job.” or “Oh, I’ll start watercoloring again, once I know everything there is to know about Swift 3.” As time went on, I realized it was not sustainable for me. Others may work differently, but I need to have a balanced variety in order to maintain energy, curiosity, and happiness. I need a mix of analytical and creativity to thrive. I need to do things with my hands sometimes. I also need people in my life.
I am now in my third week of 3x per week yoga practice. It has helped my back immensely and made me excited to introduce other sports and activities back into my life. Right now I am watching this video series on Youtube through Apple TV.
I started cooking more.
I visited an old friend in Pittsburgh.
I sowed seeds that will hopefully grow into peppers on my rooftop garden.
As I have begun to do these things, I have started to feel like me again. I also started looking at Meetups and feeling thrilled to attend again (“Wow – that looks so cool, I can’t wait to learn about that!”). I have started tinkering on my coding projects again. I experimented with Python and building a web crawler. I experimented with open sourcing my goals on Github as a way to strengthen my command line and Git skill-sets.
Taking a moment to reflect and recenter myself has been important. I look forward to continuing forth with renewed energy and passion!
Have you ever lost balance in your life, but then found your way back? I’d love to hear about it. 💚