Motivation

When it’s not there, life is tough, everything is a struggle, things you once enjoyed start to become a chore. Sound familiar to anyone?

Several years ago, I hit this very problem, and it’s taken until now for me to properly speak up about it.

So, why now? Simple really, I’m now at the total opposite stage.

2013 was a pretty crappy year, and to be honest so was most of 2014 – for a number of different reasons – and to top if off I really hit an all time low with ‘the internet’, to the point where I was ready to completely jack it all in and change career.

I don’t know when exactly, or what, triggered this. Looking back it was probably a number of things which all came together to hit me hard.

The ‘eureka’ moment came when I attended DDD North one of the sessions Burnout Is Real And It’s Coming To Get You struck a chord and really resonated with some of the issues I’d been facing.

I remember being sat next to a few developers on the day, and to say they were highly cynical of this was an understatement. It’s easy to judge when you’re not in that situation, the lack of empathy shown from these seasoned developers was shocking.

On the train back home I started to think about what Richard talked about. For the first time in what seemed like an age, I got my notepad out and started to write things down. I realise now that this was the start of the long road out of the dip I was in.

Fast forward 12 months, I’d just had a 121 with my team leads. It didn’t go well and this shocked me, deeply.

I felt like a failure, but I didn’t let it get me down – well, not too much – instead, afterwards I got my notepad out and again started to make notes.

I analysed what was said, whether I felt it fair or not – and let’s just be clear, not all of what was said was either fair or totally justified – I looked at reasons why these things may have been said, I looked at what I could do to stop things, to improve things.

These quiet musings, led me to one very clear epiphany – it was time for me to move jobs – this move turned out to be far more important that I could ever imagine.

I now blog more than I’ve ever done, I have more thoughts/opinions on things than I have done for a long long time. I find myself scribbling notes on side projects all the time, I have ideas on things – not just work related – a lot more.

Now, I don’t think this is sudden influx in motivation is entirely down to a move in jobs, but it’s certainly helped.

I attend more community meetups now, all which not only help get me thinking, but get me involved and talking to likeminded people in the Manchester web community. At Christmas I bought a Kindle. Rather than sleeping or wasting my commute to work, I’m making a conscious effort to read more, to get engrossed in a book, to let my imagination run wild.

I’ve also realised that I needed to have some outlets away from the internet, enter DIY and photography. I’m by no means great at either, but having that time away from the keyboard, away from the distractions of Twitter, allows me some amazing time to think about things, to process thoughts which I’d forgotten about.

Put all this together, and as you can probably guess, it’s really starting to have a positive impact on things.

The future is looking good.