Categories
Maturity Work

Work | Life Balance

I have this problem.

I have 2 notebooks.

The first is one that I use during work hours to jot notes down throughout the day. I am a Product Manager by day, so there are tons of things I just can’t trust my brain to retain, so I write a lot of things down.

The second is one that is more or less a journal. It’s much more personal than just a list of task or project requirements. This is what I use when I’m taking notes during church, or while I’m reading a book.

It seems like a simple problem, but it goes deeper. I have this idea that there can be separation of work and life. Like you clock into one just after clocking out of the other. Some of this all steams from a season of gross imbalance in my life. My wife and I had just had our first baby and life was busy. I started taking on client work on the side to help cover my wife’s income that we were no longer getting because she was staying home with the baby. This ended up being about 6 months of me working nearly every night until after midnight.

The work was a blessing because it helped us get into our first home and helped provide for us financially for that time. Unfortunately, my relationship with my wife started to suffer. She was a trooper, but she was ready for me to be there…without my computer in my lap.

Fast forward a bit. I’m at an amazing company that meets our financial needs and even gives me the flexibility to work remotely a few days a week. I love what I do and the team I get to work with. I love my wife and daughter and the time I get to spend with them. It’s a pretty sweet setup. I still do little bits of side work here and there, but it’s a bonus and not necessity anymore.

I think because I worked so much before, I have become scared to work after hours. Like I’m going to fall down that hole again. Here’s the problem… I love what I do. I genuinely love it. I’m in a lead role, so sometimes that means I have to spend some time in the evenings fixing something or talking a team member off the ledge, but it’s pretty rare.

Sometimes creativity hits and it’s 8:30pm. Sometimes I just get the urge to work on something. I would typically rather be on my laptop than be playing a video game or doing the things I use to do in my free time. Sometimes that is ok.

I really don’t even know what I’m saying anymore. I guess the point is, I’m learning there must be balance, but balance doesn’t look like work from 8-5 and then shut your work brain down.

Someone I work with recently told me that there is no difference between work and life. He is probably right.

I think I just need 1 notebook.

Categories
Identity Maturity

When I’m my best self

I’ve been doing some soul searching lately. Honestly, I have felt a bit off for quite some time now. I can’t really put my finger on when this change happened, but I can clearly look back to a time in my life where I feel like I was a much better version of myself.

I don’t want to be too negative, there have been so many things that have happened in my life over the last 2 years that have stretched me beyond anything I thought I was capable of being. I am now not only a husband, but also a father. I’ve taken on more responsibility in my job. I am a homeowner. So many new things have happened the last couple of years.

For some reason though, I just feel disconnected.

I’m really trying to think through why that is and what I’m missing. I know that I’m growing. I know that there are areas in life that I am much better today than I was 2 years ago. That being said, I feel like there are some things that were present in my life then that aren’t there now.

I’m not reading or writing like I use to.

I miss the days that I read and really dug into theological topics. This is how I wrestled with God. This is how I found out who He is and who I am because of that.

I need to remember this is a process. Sometimes I get discouraged because I want results. I have become completion oriented in my way of thinking. When I have a free evening, I tend to think of things I can start and finish that night.

I’m not really sure what this looks like. I don’t even want to put some type of schedule or routine to it. I just want it to be a priority, like it was before.

Categories
Identity Maturity

Living to your full potential

The 2015 NBA Finals just finished up last week, and I caught myself seeing more than just some guys playing a game with a ball on the tv. This year, I noticed a select few individuals that really stood head and shoulders above the rest.

There is a popular video going around now that keys in on Steph Curry’s work ethic, and the fact that his success is not an accident. See, I use to think that there were just people who were destined to be great. A few years ago, I would have looked at Steph and said, ‘It’s crazy to see people who are doing what they were designed to do.’ Now, to a degree, there is truth in that. But at the end of the day, Steph wasn’t designed to be a basketball player. If he wanted too, he could of done a handful of other things with his life.

He was, however, called to follow Christ, and called to lead his family with love and humility. That is something he could have done with any career choice.

When he decided to pursue the game of basketball, he did it with everything he had. He didn’t go at it half-hearted. He trained for hours and hours to perfect a skill that would allow him to be one of the best players in the NBA.

There is something inspiring about seeing someone be the best at whatever it is they may be doing.

I wonder what it would look like if more people gave that kind of devotion to their passion. It doesn’t have to be basketball. What can I do as a web developer to push myself to be one of the best? Why am I not doing that?

Life is too short to just float by and be average. I want to be someone that people look up to and say, ‘that’s a guy thats giving it everything he has.’ More importantly, when they look at me, I want them to see me loving and leading my family, and being loved and lead by Christ.

Categories
Freedom Identity Work

Imposter Syndrome

As a web developer, my greatest struggle is believing in my knowledge and worth.

No matter how much my skill level may increase, it seems as though it’s never good enough. There is always someone out there that knows more than I do, or can do the things I do much better.

I have only really been in this field for about 3 years professionally, so in most cases, I’m a young gun. It seems everywhere I look I see guys that have been doing this 3 and 4 times as long as I have. There are days when I feel like I just don’t know enough and am not a real asset to my team and community.

I have been blessed with an amazing team. They have all been in this industry much longer than I have and have tons more experience. The best thing about them though, is their willingness and desire to help me grow my skill set and learn as much as I can from them.

I will admit, there are days when it’s overwhelming. It seems as though the world of development just keeps growing and growing. It seems almost impossible to keep up. I realized the other day that I’m not the only one who feels like this. I was talking with one of my coworkers the other day who has been working in the development world for over 10 years. He started talking about feeling like he didn’t know enough and that there were so many people out there that knew so much more than him.

I wonder how I will feel in 7 years…

I think there are positives and negatives to this part of our industry. I think allowing this feeling to fuel you into working hard and pushing yourself to be the best developer you can be is great! We just need to be careful about allowing this feeling to settle in thoughts of inadequacy.

Let’s make sure we are pushing each other to be better. And let’s not forget the way it felt to be the new kid on the block.

Categories
Maturity

Overwhelmed

I have a confession. Sometimes I get really overwhelmed with life. There are just so many freakin things to do.
Not only are there a ton of chores that need to be completed, but then theres all the other categories in life like reading, learning new things, eating healthy, working out, big projects like garage doors that have been broken for a year…the list goes on and on.
You see, I have a hard time separating these tasks. When I manage to get some free time I have a hard time checking any of these things off of my list, which is a made up thing in my head. I may have a couple hours where I don’t really have anything going on and I could knock out a couple of the things on my ‘list’, but instead I run away from the monster of uncompleted tasks.
This year I only have one resolution..

Do One Thing.

I’m going to start by making a list of all the things that are in my head. Large projects, small projects, daily tasks, they will all be written down.
Most times I don’t complete a task because in the moment I forget how badly I want to do it. I’m hoping that having these tasks written down will help me to knock them off one by one.
That is going to be the key this year- ‘One by One’
I’m not going to fix the garage today, and finish reading that book, and learn something new, and eat the healthiest meal I’ve ever eaten…but I will make it my goal to do one of those things. Just one. Then tomorrow I will tackle something new.
My list might not ever be a slate clean of tasks, and thats really ok. I’m learning life isn’t about finishing all the things, it’s about living and doing things.
So this is check mark number one. Actually sitting down and writing this out and getting it out of my head. I did the dishes earlier too…I’m kinda kickin’ ass today!

Categories
Identity

Storyline

I just started the Storyline workbook and am really excited.

Storyline is all about finding your subplot in God’s story. I’m excited to see what God has to say about what my part to play is.

I have setup a ‘My Subplot‘ page, and will be entering details into it as I get them.

Categories
Maturity

Here and Now

This weekend I went out with a couple of my close friends. That 24 hour period was one of the best I’ve had in quite some time. Typically I’d have more than a few photos on my iPhone to prove my point, or at least try to. I made a decision this weekend though. I decided that I wanted to be present the whole weekend. Part of that was deciding not to pull the ol’ camera out quite as many times, or at all if possible.

Categories
Freedom

Why Am I Not Happy – Things Happy People Do

We all know people that aren’t happy. We all have someone in our life that just seems to never be satisfied or in a good mood. That person may be you. Have you ever asked yourself, ‘why am I not happy?’ Below are some things that I’ve learned happy people do. Try tackling this list by adding a few to the way you live every week.