There are certainly more stressful jobs than being a software developer. Still, there are unique pressures that come with the territory when working to ship a product, support a product, or (in my case) serve a client and their systems.
Let’s face it, when dealing with technology, or sometimes end users, we can often feel like Peach from Finding Nemo under attack from Darla.
Finding your own happy place is an important part of being a successful worker, developer, parent, and person.
Stress management comes in all forms. For some it is a quiet space, a book, and hot tea. For others it may be an intense workout at the gym. Still others may find a simple walk around the office park to be enough to clear the mind and refresh one’s thinking.
For me, it is lunch by the lake.
Near my office is a country club that has a lake. Along that lake is a road. And along that road I will park my car and eat my lunch.
Sitting by the lake gives me a chance to get perspective. Whatever broken code or failed install or bizarre client request befalls me is safely tucked back at the office. Across the lake I can see people playing mid-day tennis. Around the corner, a lucky few are teeing off in their round of golf.
The lake is a reminder that there is more to life than work.
Coming to and from the lake is a motivator, as I pass by country club homes with luxury sedans parked in their driveways. I believe working hard will reap benefits, and pressing on through whatever the day’s stress may be will inevitably teach me something.
What is your happy place? Do you go there often enough?