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Discussion on: I'm loosing my enthusiasm to code.

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dennmart profile image
Dennis Martinez

I've been working in software engineering for over 15 years now, and these same symptoms have happened a couple of times throughout my career.

I noticed that the best way for me to snap out of this guilt-driven cycle is to find something outside of software development to spend time on. Now, that doesn't mean just getting lazy and not doing anything, or spending hours watching TV or Netflix. In my experience, that makes the symptoms a lot worse.

It can be a useful skill that can be useful for your daily life or just something that you've been curious about. For example, I began taking Japanese language lessons during a particularly stressful time at the day job. I had no practical use for it but I had been wanting to try my hand at learning a new spoken language (as opposed to yet another programming language). It really helped me unwind during the evening and weekends.

You also never know what these new skills can bring your way. For instance, learning Japanese triggered a sequence of events that led me to meet my wife and even move to Japan. I never expected that to happen when I began studying the language.

Is there something that you've been wanting to spend more time on that doesn't relate to work? It could be cooking, taking some gym classes, learning something new outside of tech, and so on. You need to give yourself space and permission to step away from what you do on a daily basis. I admit it can be a bit tough, but it's one of the better ways to break free from this cycle.

Best of luck to you!

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mx profile image
Maxime Moreau Author

Thank you for your reply, very valuable!

Now, that doesn't mean just getting lazy and not doing anything, or spending hours watching TV or Netflix. In my experience, that makes the symptoms a lot worse.

This is perfect! Thank you so much... I think I feel guilty because I do nothing, just "chill", but I'm not used to! I will try to find something, I'm learning how to play guitar for some months, and I feel better when I do. I'll do more, I'll read more and so one.

You need to give yourself space and permission to step away from what you do on a daily basis.

Yeah, I suppose I have to disconnect, do various things.

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dwilmer profile image
Daan Wilmer

What I (not nearly often enough) try to do is find something that gives me energy. Playing a musical instrument can work indeed, but running or going for a motorbike ride or trying to get epsxe to run also worked. And it could be that, sometimes, coding also works. Just find something that gives you energy and doesn't feel like a chore.

Just remember: after hours = you time. It's in your own best interest to recharge. And, frankly, it's also the company's best interest. If you spent so much time coding and learning that you resent the activity, you're less productive and more error-prone. If you are recharged and ready, you can write more and better code. So don't feel guilty!