I started to add a daily coping tip to the SQLServerCentral newsletter and to the Community Circle, which is helping me deal with the issues in the world. I’m adding my responses for each day here.
Today’s tip is to release yourself from inner demands and self-criticism.
I know a lot of technical people that aim high in their lives. They want great code, they want smooth running servers, they want financial prosperity, they want bigger and better jobs, and success for their families. All things that can help drive someone forward in their lives.
However, it can be detrimental to your mental health to compare yourself to others at a point in time and evaluate your success by theirs.
I was thinking about this after hearing a friend talk about the challenges of recording a session for an upcoming conference. In this case, the person asked if I was getting a green screen, new mic, or any other improvement to my setup for the event. This individual felt pressure because so many speakers have been talking about OBS, StreamDeck, and other devices.
I wasn’t, and I’m not. I certainly could improve things, but I need to decide what matters for me. I think what some people are doing is interesting, and I do think there might be ways to better build content and engagement for audiences, but I’m not driven to match what others do.
I try hard to set some goals, make plans, and work towards them, but I recognize that things go wrong, life gets in the way, and I need to both acknowledge when I make mistakes and can do better, while also accepting I may miss some milestones. It doesn’t do my any good to beat myself up inside.
Two quotes I keep in mind here:
- Man plans and god laughs – Yiddish saying
- Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans – John Lennon
The latter reminds me to keep moving on, and do things. Not just plan.