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Search - "feedback loop"
Manager: Send me a MS Teams chat if you have any questions or updates, it's faster than email and you'll get quick feedback from me :) Let's get that feedback loop ROLLING!
Manager: *ignores my (multiple) requests for feedback on MS Teams for over a week.*
I just want to move my tickets into done :(5
Stress made me fall into old habits of instead of saying stop and letting my team now that I was falling apart (not realising it myself even) I just kept saying "Yes, I fix that." to every single request that was made in the project.
The closer we got to the deadline, the more I hyperfocused and ignored the signs. I just kept working. The last two days I didn't even sleep.
Of course the launch botched. I finally broke down and both my mind and my body have given up, since yesterday I'm in a mental feedback loop causing continuous anxiety attacks and migraines. I literally CAN'T do anything but trying to not go back into fight- or flight mode and remember to breathe.
I FINALLY made my project manager aware (something I should have done days ago) that I am incapacitated and now I am waiting for medication (Oxazepam) to be picked up at the pharmacy by my husband.
I almost literally worked myself into the ground.
I've been here before. Never again.
This is what happens if you don't listen to your mind and body and put up a white flag in time.11
Of course a good, long playlist of my personal jams with a beer next to me :)
But reasons to actually get to work:
1. If it's an interesting task and everything goes according to plan, I get a positive feedback loop of motivation.
3. Personal projects are always easier for me to begin with and stay focused on.
Personal projects are also dangerous for me because I keep going back to them until I don't have any motivation to go back to my work projects... Kinda like a double edged sword I guess
I can work productively and for very long hours with a lot of stuff which many dev considers productivity hurdles:
- single small monitor? No problem (in fact in one occasion in which my roommate accidentally broke my laptop charghing port and I couldn't get a spare I worked on an iPad connected trough SSH to a Linux machine completing one of the hardest tasks I ever did without significant loss of productivity)
- old machine? That's ok as long as I can run a minimal Linux and not struggle with Windows
- noise and chatter around me? A 10€ pair of earbuds are enough for me, no noise cancelling needed
- "legacy" stack/programming language? I'd rather spend my days coding in Swift or Rust but in the end I believe which is the dev and its skill which gets the job done not fancy language features so Java 8 will be fine
- no JetBrains or other fancy IDE? Altough some refactoring and code generation stuff is amazing Neovim or VS Code, maybe with the help of some UNIX CLI tools here and there are more than enough
despite this I found out there is a single thing which is like kryptonite for my productivity bringing it from above average* to dangerously low and it's the lack of a quick feedback loop.
For programming tasks that's not a problem because it doesn't matter the language there's always a compiler/interpreter I can use to quickly check what I did and this helps to get quickly in a good work flow but since I went to work with a customer which wants everything deployed on a lazily put together "private cloud" which needs configurations in non-standard and badly documented file formats, has a lot of stuff which instead of being automated gets done trough slowly processed tickets, sometimes things breaks and may take MONTHS to see them fixed... my productivity took a big hit since while I'm still quick at the dev stuff (if I'm able to put together a decent local environment and I don't depend on the cloud of nightmares, something which isn't always warranted) my productivity plummets when I have to integrate what I did or what someone else did in this "cloud" since lacking decent documentation everything has do be done trough a lot of manual tasks and most importantly slow iterations of trial and error. When I have to do that kind stuff (sadly quite often) my brain feels like stuck on "1st gear": I get slow, quickly tired and often I procrastinate a lot even if I force myself out of non work related internet stuff.
*I don't want this to sound braggy but being a passionate developer which breathes computers since childhood and dedicating part of my freetime on continuously improving my skill I have an edge over who do this without much passion or even reluctantly and I say this without wanting to be an èlitist gatekeeper, everyone has to work and tot everybody as the privilege of being passionate in a skill which nowadays has so much market1