You may have noticed more content showing up here on the new site. Some of it, like this post, is new, part of my effort to get back into regular posts. The rest is content from the old site that I have started migrating over to the new site.
Over the last few months, I have been working on my private servers to update them to more modern tools and to make them easier to manage.
Most of my career, I have been a software developer. Occasionally I have tried my hand at managing people. Up until my current job, my attempts at management have met with mixed success. There are a variety of reasons behind this and I want to share one of them. Motivation is important to my success. As a technologist, I had a good grasp on what motivated me and was able to consistently lean into it. In my past attempts at management, I didn't make the connection that those well understood motivations for a technologist didn't apply. Even with this understanding, I struggled.
Yesterday I took what ended up being an epic walk. I have already written about how I have been walking more lately. Walking more has been easier over the last two months. I had been taking days off or at least working from home while focused on my job search. The other week, I had a sudden run of days in DC but hadn't yet come up with attractive walking routes to help me keep up my new habit. In looking around an online map of what was nearby, I found Constitution Gardens. The Gardens truly are one of the hidden treasures of DC and I wish I had found them sooner. There is a huge water feature within which is a small island that has a ring of stone engraved with the signatures of all those who signed the Declaration of Independence. The Gardens are a decent half hour walk from where I work. Worked--today is my last day and my new gig is located much closer to home, in the suburbs.
I woke up late this morning, at least late for a weekend. Despite sleeping in, my mind and limbs felt heavy. I skipped my usual habit of making myself breakfast from scratch, instead throwing something frozen in the microwave. Out the window, the neighborhood was gray, wet from overnight rain. I felt unmotivated to keep at another, more recent habit, of taking brisk walks on as many days as I can. I will be traveling this coming week, I knew I should get out of the house to walk when I have the time and space so I feel less bad if I have to skip a day later on.
I used to hate travel for work. I'd be stuck in the pressure cooker of modern air travel with people with whom as often as not the only thing I had in common was a job. Can you imagine, long spans of either awkward silence or endlessly rehashing work? For those jobs of the past, the purpose of any given trip was likely to involve some customer glad handing, a chore under the best of circumstances. The destinations were always uniformly nondescript, beige, corporate, even industrial.