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Michael Tharrington for The DEV Team

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Discussion and Comment of the Week - v21

This weekly roundup highlights what we believe to be the most thoughtful and/or interesting discussion of the week. We're also be highlighting one particularly cool comment in each installment. πŸ™Œ

The DEV Community is particularly special because of the kind and thoughtful discussions happening between community members. As such, we want to encourage folks to participate in discussions and reward those who are initiating or taking part in conversations across the community. After all, a community is made possible by the people interacting inside it.

Discussion of the Week

For this week's discussion of the week, I'd like to highlight 2 different interesting discussions that are ongoing...

@xcoderx's Will a break from job affect my career?:

... and @viktoriabors' Work - Life - Side Project triangle. Can be balanced ?

Both of these discussions are worthy of attention (and perhaps a comment if you haven't already left one πŸ˜‰).

I could definitely relate to @xcoderx's desire to take a sabbatical in an effort to stamp out burnout. And there were so many helpful responses though of course with contradicting guidance as you'd expect... after all, there is no right answer here, but it's helpful to hear from other's experiences nonetheless.

@viktoriabors' post is also really relatable! Lots of us know the chaotic feeling of taking on a bunch of projects at once and getting pulled into a million different directions. While I'm not a dev, I personally face this struggle quite often with my own list of todos. Also similar to the previous discussion we highlighted, folks hopped into this discussion with some really helpful pointers around the importance of pacing yourself, eliminating distractions in your work environment, and defining a finishing point for your projects. All great advice! πŸ™Œ

Comment of the Week

As for our comment of the week, @jmfayard's thoughtful response to @devsyedmohsin's What is Success takes the cake!

What is Success?

People will point out correctly that it depends from the character of the person.

Most interesting to me is that it heavily depends on the country.

Not on its geographical location, but the culture that permeates the country.

For the US in particular there is a very famous book from Max Weber - the guy basically invented modern western sociology - who linked the US meaning of success from the protestant ethic brought by its early immigrants. A caricature of the argument - read the book - would be that the protestant immigrants want to go to paradise, but only men of virtue go to paradise, and money is a symptom that you have this kind of virtue.

The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism is a book written by Max Weber, a German sociologist, economist, and politician. Begun as a series of essays, the original German text was composed in 1904 and 1905, and was translated into English for the first time by American sociologist Talcott Parsons in 1930. It is considered a founding text in economic sociology and a milestone contribution to sociological thought in general.

Obviously the success bloggers on Medium who tells you how to wake up as early as Elon Musk (a man of virtue because he's rich) and become - at least - millionaire, are often completely non-religious. But it doesn't really matter, everyone has a weird relationship to money, and that relationship mainly comes from the culture you were raised with.

And you don't find the same amount of "success" literature in Japan to take another extreme example.

The most japanese version of success is what they call the Ikigai

Ikigai is a Japanese concept referring to something that gives a person a sense of purpose, a reason for living.

Noting that success if often defined differently depending on the culture you're in, Jean-Michel's comment helps pull back the curtain and reveal the environmental factors that play a role in defining success. It was interesting hearing Max Weber's take and some of the historical/sociological reasons for the United States defining success the way they have. Also, in contrast, seeing the Venn diagram visualization of the Japanese concept Ikigai, was super interesting and relatable. Being aware of the cultural pressures that play a role in defining success allows us to more easily see how these pressures have affected our own definition of success; in some instances, we may find that our definitions line up well with the culture we're in, or perhaps we may realize that what society has dictated as success is a far cry from our own feelings of accomplishment and sense of worth.

What are your picks?

There's loads of great discussions and comments floating about in this community. These are just a few we chose to highlight. πŸ™‚

I urge you all to share your favorite comment and/or discussion of the past week below in the comments. And if you're up for it, give the author an @mention β€” it'll probably make 'em feel good. πŸ’š

Top comments (1)

jmfayard profile image
Jean-Michel πŸ•΅πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ Fayard • Edited

I'm glad you liked the comment about what success means in different countries, USA vs Japan in my cases.
If someone has insights on what the typical definition of success is in another country,
it would be cool to continue the conversation.

For example I'm pretty sure the definition of success if quite different in my home country of France,
but being inside of it, I can't really define it well.
I would need new eyes for that.