Monday 7 September 2015

About productivity and mental health as a software dev

Hello World!

As an experiment I'll be posting stuff about my life, work, ideas and more. Depending on the responses I'll consider putting more effort in this. Expect nerd stuff, me bragging about the awesome hardware I purchased second hand and me raving about the next best thing to build your web service with.

I'm not usually someone who reads books often, but in the past few weeks I've made a change in the way I spend my day at work. The changes were minimal but allowed me to be a little more physically active and decrease the time I spend frustrated while trying to solve problems in our web service back-end. The changes I made were inspired by two books, The Blueprint for a Productive Programmer: How to Write Great Code Fast and Prevent Repetitive Strain Injuries by Moshfegh Hamedani and Becoming a better programmer by Pete Goodliffe. Links to the books in different stores will be at the bottom of this post. I didn't finish Becoming a better programmer yet but I'm plan on finishing it soon. 

As I usually don't really read any book at all (my work research is mostly on-line) I found it a really nice way to read a lot of stuff that wasn't necessarily something I was Googling for. Both books are meant for programmers that are passionate and are focused on making yourself function more optimal in situations where you need to deliver code fast and pressure is usually high. Small tips and tricks help you optimise the way you handle your work day and how you plan it. I recommend both books to anyone who feels that your work could be easier but doesn't know what he/she is currently doing wrong to prevent this. 

The Blueprint for a Productive Programmer

This book handles mostly concerns related to physical health (and the effects of long term physical strain on your ability to continue doing your job), managing your time more efficiently, minimise distractions, and improve your mental health. I feel that really any programmer should read this, the book is worth it's weight in gold! Very practical and easy to read. But as the author states in the book: 
“Reading this book is one thing, putting it into action is another. If you don’t practice what you learn in this book and continue with your bad habits, you’ll be just wasting your time. ”
Excerpt From: Moshfegh Hamedani. “The Blueprint for a Productive Programmer: How to Write Great Code Fast and Prevent Repetitive Strain Injuries.”

I guess the best thing is to do what I did, start reading and if you feel that you won't be able to implement change, just stop reading. I actually forgot about that until in finished the book :). 

I'll be writing about Becoming a better programmer in a next post. If you have any questions or comments, fire away!

Links to the books:

The Blueprint for a Productive Programmer by Moshfegh Hamedani:

Amazon ebook

Becoming a better programmer by Pete Goodliffe:

O'Reilly Store, Amazon (Kindle)