My Very First Developer Journal Entry

Every morning I get up at 6:30am, light the wood furnace, shower/shave, fry two eggs, and sit down at my desk. It is still dark out. The old farmhouse is cool and quiet.

This is my daily practice.

I spend 90 minutes exploring new technologies, enhancing my skills, working through courses, building personal projects, anything I can do to improve myself as a software engineer.

I should write about it more but I don’t. Perhaps this will change in 2019.

To this end I’m using the scrum retrospective questions to reflect on my week and make notes as a developer journal entry. We’ll see if public accountability helps.

What worked well?

Coaching call. Yes I have a coach I talk to once per month. It keeps me on track with everything from time management to priorities to personal branding and marketing. I believe I originally got the desire from listening to Noah Kagan. If something is important enough to you it is worth hiring a coach. This journal entry is an outcome of my coaching call.

Progress on Market Garden Manager. One of my personal projects is a crop planning tool for serious vegetable gardeners. It is primarily to meet our needs but someday maybe someone else would like to use it as well. It has been on a shelf for a few months. This week I dusted it off and got to work on it.

Persistence on javascript type errors. Not much to explain here. Just that I slogged through several hours of javacript errors this week. By sticking with it and coming back each morning I learned a lot.

Daily review in my notebook. Also a suggestion from my coaching call. Each night I take a page in my little notebook and write down “What did I accomplish today?” and “What am I going to accomplish tomorrow?”. It is specific to my personal/professional development. If this journal entry is my sprint retrospective then I guess you could call my nightly review the scrum equivalent of my own personal daily standup meeting. Except I’m sitting down – usually on the edge of my bed.

What could be improved?

Giving a book away on twitter. I offered a book up on twitter as a giveaway. I even offered to pay shipping to anywhere in North America. Why? I’ve gone through it already and now it just gathers dust on my shelf. It is starting to get a little older and I thought someone could get some benefit from it before recycling. After all it is still $47 on amazon.com. Not a single person responded. That’s fine. My friend said he wanted it. Don’t know if I’ll try that again. The book: Dependency Injection in .NET by Mark Seeman.

Exercise. I dropped some team sports at the end of 2018 in order to have more time and energy for personal/professional development. The justification was that I would spend my lunch hour doing some sort of physical activity and get to bed earlier at night. It is only half-working. I’m going to sleep at 10:30pm but I’m still am not taking a lunch break from work unless I have an appointment to go to.

What will I commit to doing in the next Sprint?

Listen to James Clear Atomic Habits audio book. I bought it on audible this morning. I’ve heard a few people raving about it. I commit to listen to it once before the next sprint.

Go Swimming. I will go lap swimming at the pool one day this week during my lunch break (I promise to take a lunch break from work that day).