Sabbatical Update (Week 13)
September 3, 2021
Summary: (27 August 2021 to 2 September 2021) Finished the technical writing contract, continued A Matter Of Degrees, and continued the Python class.
I continued reading A Matter Of Degrees by Gino Segre. As far as popular science books go I'm finding it lacking. The problem here is that it's a survey of a bunch of topics loosely related to temperature. The author seems to go on a lot of tangents and I'm frequently asking myself, "how is this related to temperature?"
I finished the technical writing contract and continued the Python class. My partner's student visa came through so I spent a good chunk of time finding a short-term place for us in San Francisco and booking a flight for her.
I'm working through all of the Python class homework and reading, way ahead of schedule. My brother is learning programming and has been hacking away at an automation project. Every other day or so he walks me through his code and I help him get unstuck. He's also working on building his career and I'm helping out there where I can.
3 months of sabbatical! How's it going?
- Well, it's more like 2.25 or 2.5 months of sabbatical. As mentioned previously, I took on a technical writing contract for 1 month, working 3 hours a day, 7 days a week. For the first 3 weeks, it was satisfying to learn a new product, and help a company get their docs to a solid place. By the last week I was itching to get back to my own projects. Psychologically I think it was quite helpful to replenish my coffer. Also, it was wonderful to go back to a more traditional technical writing role, where a company has a developer product, and the success of the company is very clearly tied up with the effectiveness of their docs.
- In general it's really wonderful to just wake up and do whatever I want and to be completely removed from work pressure and stress.
- One thing that I'm coming to terms with and learning to accept is that I'll probably make less overall progress on my projects than I hoped for. That's because they're all taking longer than expected and I'm working less per day than expected.
- I like the strategy of picking a project for 1 week and focusing on that. I'm at a crucial point where I have to follow through on the personal projects that I started at the beginning of the sabbatical.
- I do think the sabbatical is serving its purpose of helping me focus more on things that are easy to neglect when you have a full-time job. E.g. health, relationships, etc.
- These weekly updates are super helpful. It's great to be able to look back and see what was happening week-by-week. Maybe I'll continue this practice even after the sabbatical.