How much work should a developer be doing outside of work hours?
The question is easy enough, and I’m talking about all work — not just work related to your employment. I don’t think many people would argue that it’s important to maintain a healthy worklife balance, or that it’s important to continue to learn and grow outside of the workplace, where you can focus on things not directly related to your current projects. But how much is too much?
Unfortunately, I have neither answer or opinion.
I think it’s important to not get burnt out and I also think it’s important to complete projects and ship code. In my free time I spend time with my family, watch a movie or a tv show, or do some coding. I often feel guilty though that I’m not coding enough. There are a lot of projects that I’d like to start or complete, but it feels like I don’t have the time to do them. I’d have the time if I put it in, but at the same time, if I put in as much time as I wanted I’d burn out.
So, what’s the solution? Again, I don’t have one. I’m focusing on reading at least one book related to my career path every quarter and to keep on top of development blogs and podcasts. I also devote some time every day to looking at stackexchange and stackoverflow.
I think I’m doing enough for now, but I still want to do more. That’s life I guess.