Kids, Life, Work

What is Life?; Part-time work

I and my colleague at work have this running joke between us that one way to know if you’re so stressed and exhausted with work is if you reach a point where you get to ask yourself “what is life?” Followed by the question, “why did I become a programmer/software developer?”

It has been a really exhausting 2018 so far that resigning from work has crossed my mind although it’s never going to be an option, at least not yet.

I realized that even though solving problems is hard, being a dev team lead is more stressful. It’s even more stressful when I need to do some small coding work on the side because I can’t really focus on coding when I still have to think about other dev admin work like merging code of my teammates to a release/hotfix branch. After which, I have to test them and to report bugs.

And too many times this year beyond my fingers can count have I found myself asking what life is all about. It pops out more frequently when I have headaches. Not sure what that really means but I know it means I already need to stop working and have a break. The problem is that I’m having a hard time sleeping lately, thus the running joke I told my wife that “Sagittarians would sleep when they’re dead.” LOL

So back to the question, what is life? There are two ways to answer this question. One is to answer it by being really specific to your personal experience. Second is by giving a general answer that applies to everyone, like saying “life is what you make it.”

I prefer a general answer to questions like these. Personal experiences are well and good, but I think a general answer is harder to find, thus, it allows one to think really deep.

What is life? Life is about living. It is moving. Naturally, it can have different phases that can differ from one person to another. How people react to what happens in their lives also differ. It’s easier to deal with things that people have planned or started. However, how people choose to face things beyond their control is another significant part of life. More often than not, one’s life is shaped by how a person reacts to these situations.

It’s easy to point out how one should really react, but it’s part of human nature that emotions would dictate how one reacts. Some people easily react, but others have an internal struggle on how to react. One special group of people though can easily adjust their reaction. They only think about on how they can properly and rightly deal with the situation, no matter how difficult it is.

After realizing how extra income really comes in handy, I’ve started doing part-time work again since June. It’s also beneficial as I can code again even for a few hours each day.

So with more than 12 hours of work I’m doing each weekday, weekends seem like long weekends to me. I always try to find time to play PS4 with my kids and I really prefer going out at least once with my family, which I rarely wanted to do before.

After all, life isn’t just about work, it’s about living with my loved ones.





Losing the Fire

After having been a dev team lead for the past 9 months, I’ve started to feel that I’m losing interest in the work that I do. I would like to attribute it to fatigue but I know stress is just a consequence. I believe that all kinds of work can be tiring but it’s only by loving what you do that you ease, if not lose, all the stress because of working too hard.

I think the only thought that keeps me going is my family. The job pays well enough so I can’t just decide to quit on a whim. Having a new job entails another period of adjustment and I’m not even sure if the working hours will be as flexible as my current one.

I think I can make it through this small hump on the road. It’s not like I’ll be like this forever. I guess achieving small wins in one or two of our projects will be enough to keep me motivated.


Independence Day

Free. I’m finally free from all the monitoring and activity tracking from the system I had to use for work. I thought it’s going to be fine, but I didn’t last for a year. Optimism can only do so much I guess.

I’m looking forward to a new challenging job on Monday. Not that my previous work was less challenging, but I have a feeling the new job is higher by a few notches. I already found out one pain point but I think it’s more manageable than having your work micro-managed.

What I like more is that I can bring my wife and kids to school and attend their school’s flag ceremony once again. =) And I can go out to do some errands anytime that I need to. Plus the paid leaves, 13th month and hopefully the HMO on the 3rd month. Woohoo!

Games, Life, Work

Break, Time Travel and Gaming

I have ended work earlier tonight than usual. My head’s about to burst from exhaustion so I got no choice but to stop coding. It’s been a while since I had breaks like these even with a headache such as this one. Often times I’ll just ignore it and continue with my task, but just for tonight I felt like breaking the pattern.

I finished Stephen Hawking’s A Briefer History of Time last Sunday while I was on my way here in Davao. There were two topics that really piqued my interest: time travel and the unified theory of physics. It’s impossible not to be interested with the idea of traveling to the past and future time. As Stephen says, mathematically-speaking, traveling towards the future time seems more possible than traveling back in the past. Personally, I still don’t get how traveling in the past can be possible even at the speed of light. I have no doubts with the future time traveling because it’s already been proven that time runs slower when traveling at the speed of light.

The holy grail right now of physicists, or theoretical physicists to be precised, is achieving the unified theory of physics or more popularly known as the theory of everything (or as Hawking names it the quantum theory of gravity). Based from what Hawking said though, it seems to me that it’s a more difficult task than achieving time travel even though there are already a lot of theories that led to the current state of this quest. What’s so interesting about it? For me, it’s more of the physicists’ quest than the goal because even if the theory gets to be formulated, it wouldn’t really make such a big impact in our lives. There are still uncertainties out there that prevents us from predicting future events with 100% accuracy.

Last week, I started a break from most of the games I’ve been playing for the past month and only played NBA 2K14. Sniper Elite III and Watchdogs needs to be on hold because things are getting busier now with the part-time work. The new laptop has held its ground really well with these games and except for that Win 8 blue screen last Monday, I haven’t experienced any other hiccups with this beast. =)

Habits, Work

New Project

I’m now engaged in a new project, which without a doubt is the most challenging one I’ve ever had technically speaking. My brain is totally going nuts on how it’s going to be done. Add the fact that it’s a very important project that even our director has hands-on involvement. It’s because of this that I’ll have to be really strict with my sleeping time. Otherwise, I’ll just miss the fun out of this great opportunity.

This reminds me of my high school days. I greet each new assignment, tedious projects and cumbersome experiments with a smile. The main difference? I always get a good amount of sleep even if I wake up at 5am. It’s time to revive those days.


Sudden Changes

Just a month after starting in the new company, changes have already happened. New team, new project, new shift and a new challenge.

I got moved to a new team and had to work in conjunction with Utah’s working hours. The good thing about this is that I get to have 3 days of weekend because I’m working 10 hrs. a day, 4 days a week (aside from the slight addition of night differential rate).

What’s really exciting about this project is the technical challenge. It’s going to be the hardest that I’ve ever done before. I have no idea how I’ll be able to do it but I surely love to work on this one so I can improve my skills, which I always feel so lacking. I want to move from the guy who can make things work but has no complete idea about it to a guy that can create one of the best designs and solutions.

Aside from this, there’s also an opportunity for me to undergo training in the US. It’s not that important for me since I know there’s a big chance that my visa application will be denied. But I’ll do my best to get a visa anyway.

2012 just keeps getting better as it unfolds to its last quarter. Cheers to us all!