3 years ago

Obsession

Have you ever gotten so excited about something, that you absolutely had to work on it and convert your ideas into reality?

Welcome to my life when it comes to web development. I'm a PHP developer, and was a long time user of the CodeIgniter framework. Learning MVC and getting into CodeIgniter was the real turning point in my developer career, and my first foray into pushing myself to learn and better myself mentally.

The first time I echoed out a "Hello world!" from my view file (that was being loaded by a controller!) was one of the most exciting moments I've ever had. I created something. The possibilities are now endless! I can develop applications that can control spaceships traveling to Mars!

Or, at least that's the sort of thoughts that run through my brain when I achieve something, even so much as being as insignificant as a "Hello world!" – I can't tell you how many times I've echo'd out that famous phrase in various different programming languages, and yet it never gets old.

Reality quickly settles back into your view though as you immediately run into your first error as you attempt at creating your Mars Spaceship Dashboard.

Regardless though, I personally continued to push on. I was determined to overcome any and all errors that presented themselves before me.

I then came to realize how important documentation was, and how helpful and incredible it can be when its written well.

And then coding standards! Oh my god, I can actually read my code months afterwards without scratching my head in wonder.

And then design patterns! You mean to tell me these perplexing problems I've been running into (or have never realized) have already happened (years) before, and some smart dude(tte) came up with a (sometimes not so much) simple pattern to overcome it!?

With every step I take, I find myself always feeling that sense of excitement from when I first echoed out "Hello world!"

I've moved on from CodeIgniter to better things. For a while I was all for FuelPHP, but then eventually tried out that other framework, Laravel, that I've seen so many developers speak highly of.

I have nothing against FuelPHP, and think it's a wonderful and very capable framework, but Laravel is honestly a complete joy to work with. On top of that, there's so many resources out there, most free some paid, that teaches you so much off of this framework. And! It covers all of the things I mentioned before, plus some in regards to documentation, coding standards, and design patterns. I've learned a lot using this framework in such a short span of time that it is a bit mind blowing. A lot of that credit though goes to Code Bright, Build API's You Won't Hate, and Laracasts.

In short, I feel almost obsessed with development. Possessed with this yearning to try out different things, learning and growing as I go.Which on the surface may sound like a great trait to have, right?

I've come to find it's a double-edged sword. This drive to develop, I can't turn off. I furiously code away, each tap of the keyboard bringing me "closer" to my never-ending goal. I find myself mentally exhausted at times, yet the train in my head keeps going.

So, how many of you experience something like this? How do you wind-down your brain to take a break?