Loss of appetite

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fischgeek
Posts: 424
Joined: 29 Jan 2014, 21:39

Loss of appetite

Post by fischgeek » 24 Sep 2018, 14:04

Lately I've been experiencing a loss of appetite for coding and development. Even personal projects; ya know the ones that are supposed to keep you excited about what you do for a living.

My main job is a .net developer where my counter-part is practically a savant and creates all these awesome things and I can't keep up. My personal projects get no where because of lack of enthusiasm.

When I'm done with work I want to be at home with my wife and kids; not starting at my computer.

Just want to know has anyone else felt like this (do feel like this) and if so what did you do or did it pass?
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TheDewd
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Joined: 19 Dec 2013, 11:16
Location: USA

Re: Loss of appetite

Post by TheDewd » 24 Sep 2018, 14:52

After I've put in my 8 hours at the office, and it's finally time to go home, I have very little time for personal projects.

My partner and I have 2 children together -- Boy (almost 7 years old), and Girl (2 1/2 years old).

I help with the daily chores while I am home (dishes, laundry, cleaning, etc.), our son's school homework, baths for the kids, preparing dinner, diaper changing, ...

We try to split the chores & responsibilities, but not as evenly as I would like...

My daughter demands every bit of my attention. She is a "daddy's girl", while our son prefers his mommy. She wants to constantly climb on me, and have me play with her. I can't say "No" to my little girl.

I can't have a laptop out or it might be destroyed by my daughter, and I can't be at the computer in another room for any length of time without my partner yelling at me to come help with something, and possibly make me feel bad for not being present.

The only personal time I have to myself is from about 8:30PM-10:30PM (unless we can't get the kids to bed on time...), and by this time I'm too tired to work on anything. I usually lay around on the couch or in bed while watching YouTube or some other videos on my phone until I'm ready to sleep.

I've pretty much ceased all coding projects while at home, unless it's the weekend and I have a project in mind that I want to attempt.

I usually work on my personal projects while I'm at work -- during my lunch break, or if I come in early...

I'll be totally honest... The thing that keeps me motivated to continue a project is the recognition and feedback from the AutoHotkey community. I want to make things that people really like, and I enjoy coming back to my forum post to see all of the kind words and suggestions. I rarely work on a project anymore just for personal use... If I'm scripting, I'm probably doing it for the forums.

I don't know if I've answered your question in the way you wanted, but as I said -- for me, it's the praise and recognition from the forums that keeps me motivated.

If I don't have a particular project in mind, I look at the Unanswered Topics and try to help where I'm able.
Image Bulldozer - Sokoban inspired game from 1994 recreated in AutoHotkey.
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Gio
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Joined: 30 Sep 2013, 10:54
Location: Brazil

Re: Loss of appetite

Post by Gio » 24 Sep 2018, 15:22

Coding is a creative work, so it does require a good deal of mental disposition. Thus, it is completely normal for any coder to take some time off of coding every once in a while. This shouldn't concern you, unless of course if you do it for a living and too much time is passing before you can get back to it. If the later is the case though, i suggest reading some articles about creative burnout in order to understand what you (may) be experiencing, and how you can work it to get back on the tracks (and maintain quality of life, of course).
"What is suitable automation? Whatever saves your day for the greater matters."
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fischgeek
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Joined: 29 Jan 2014, 21:39

Re: Loss of appetite

Post by fischgeek » 24 Sep 2018, 15:29

Thanks for the replies.

@Gio, that seems like a good article and I will give it a read.

@TheDewd, I have spurts of AHK community involvement. It comes and goes for me. Lately, it's been gone for me (hence my quietness on the forums). When I do contribute, I also feed off the dopamine fix from others. Maybe after my upcoming, small vacation I will feel better about things.
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tidbit
Posts: 1090
Joined: 29 Sep 2013, 17:15
Location: USA

Re: Loss of appetite

Post by tidbit » 24 Sep 2018, 15:46

I make very little amounts of stuff now. Basically no more educational/"just because" stuff. If I make something, I need it, or someone else is paying me to make it for them.

if I need it, I only make it if it sounds simple. give it a working ugly UI, done in 30min or less. otherwise try and find it online or just deal with doing it manually if it's a one-time task.

Last thing I made (only a couple days ago) was a simple stopwatch for figuring out time/delays in a video edit:
Spoiler
rawr. fear me.
*poke*
Is it December 21, 2012 yet?
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nnnik
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Location: Germany

Re: Loss of appetite

Post by nnnik » 24 Sep 2018, 16:05

I have finals this week. So I have to learn a lot physics and I've been rather busy recently.
Thats why the situation is very relatable to me - though to a smaller degree.
But I'd have to lie if I said that I didn't feel like that before.

What drives me to create projects is of course the recognition from the community, it's trying to advance my programming capabilities but mostly it's just doing what I want.
Do you have those moments where an idea just jumps into your head and you just immediately feel like doing it.
I let myself go and just follow this path that might lead to nothing. I start planning and working and it just feels like a constant flow and the time vanishes in the blink of an eye.
And as the project progresses along I cut a little bit of my normal tasks and start burning through my sleep reserves and exhaust myself.
But after a few days its like waking up from a dream - I'm exhausted and if I'm perfectly honest I haven't managed that much and theres still a long way to go - but it was fun.

However when I have stuff to do I just cannot say lets just do it. And the spark just dies before it can turn into a fire.
Just this morning I thought about finishing my OOP tutorial, but I had to learn physics.
No after I came home I just didn't feel like it anymore and I still had to learn physics - so in the end I won't do anything.
In time if you keep out of touch for long enough you will find that you have this feeling about other things - maybe your car, maybe your house, your garden.
And if that happens for too long you just won't keep in touch anymore. You will loose the touch with this topic.

So what I do to keep in touch is to think about the topic and get new interesting information about it.
I keep in contact with people that also relate to the topic. And when I get one of those random ideas, I try to keep them alive by thinking about them when I have nothing to do.
I might not be able to just force myself to write something whenever I want. But I can trick my brain into getting those sparks from time to time by doing this.

@TheDewd:
your post about the AHK Gameathon relates to this or? I think it might be a good idea to get people together at a random date.
Then we'll motivate people with a video introduction and give them a nice powerful tool to get the task done but also allow them to establish their own ideas.
Maybe matchup random partners or groups so that people can work together.
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TheDewd
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Location: USA

Re: Loss of appetite

Post by TheDewd » 24 Sep 2018, 16:14

nnnik wrote:@TheDewd:
your post about the AHK Gameathon relates to this or? I think it might be a good idea to get people together at a random date.
Then we'll motivate people with a video introduction and give them a nice powerful tool to get the task done but also allow them to establish their own ideas.
Maybe matchup random partners or groups so that people can work together.
You're referring to this post?: https://autohotkey.com/boards/viewtopic ... 17&t=50984

I'm still interested in that idea, for sure!
Image Bulldozer - Sokoban inspired game from 1994 recreated in AutoHotkey.
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