Escape into code

Not gonna lie, this last month has been hard.

What I’ve learned is that it’s very, very easy for me to escape into solving a coding or technical problem when my leadership duties are overwhelming. The corollary to that is that it’s almost physically painful to stop solving the problem before it’s as solved as I wanted it to be. In this kind of situation, I wanted the problem to be very thoroughly and completely solved. 80/20? Never heard of it! 100% all the way!

I’ve officially been team lead for a few months now and it was probably about time for me to need my manager to bail me out. It started at the end of a bad sprint, during which the team really didn’t accomplish much. Other team-leader-y things were bothering me. I found myself unable to make decisions.

Fortunately I work in an organization that is set up to support people and help them succeed. The people who have my back are helping me and I am becoming a better team lead. Hopefully.

But man oh man. I could not stop working on the wp-cli stuff. I am not a super disciplined person (she says, up too late yet again), and a little more discipline would have been useful last week.

But here’s where agile helps out the programmer like me who can’t let a problem go: the sprint ended and I have a whole new plate of completely different work. I can’t got into a scrum and say I did nothing for this sprint. On Friday (technically, after the sprint had ended…) I scraped together what little residue of discipline I posses, and tied up my wp-cli scripts with a bow and committed them. I made every WP instance a perfect replica of the template site. And in the new sprint, someone else is going to be the one touching wp-cli, because I am not sure I can be trusted with it and it’s good to spread the knowledge around in the team.

I’ve also been watching a lot WordCamp sessions, as the folks start getting this year’s camps online. (Pro tip: for some reason Miami was really good this year.)

And then I try to watch live streams and Twitter for WordCamps that happen over the weekends. And I went to my first ever WordPress meetup recently. And another local meetup group is on Slack now so I am lurking there.

I… yeah. I can see where this is heading. Burnout. I read something recently on the difference between self-care and self-comfort. Comfort is just that, food or TV or hugs or shopping or whatever does it for you. Perhaps to the point of over-indulgence. Care is the stuff that feeds your soul – a great conversation, an eye-opening experience. It’s care that I need now, with just a taste of comfort. That’s okay because I have access to a great source of care all the time.