I use advice 3 always.

I always turn off everything at 5 or 6 maximum.

If so much is still goin on, I just leave a message to the people and tell that I will resume tomorrow.

Also, I take some todo notes for the next day.

Thanks for a well written article, Fran!

My last letter discussed a very similar topic with also 3 actionable methods to take care of your mental health in software engineering 😊 might be interesting for your readers:


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Apr 14Liked by Fran Soto

Great advice Fran! Not exactly burnout related, but it is something that helped me keep going for longer:

For some time, I found it hard to get back to work after taking a break of a couple of hours (I work remotely, and my schedule is 100% flexible).

One trick that worked for me is leaving tasks unfinished before I take a break. For example, if I'm refactoring a codebase, I move some files but don't fix the references; I just run the linter, so I see all the errors popping up. Then I go for a break.

When I return, I see everything is in red and my mind immediately want's to fix things. It's weird, but it works. 😃

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Great one, I really liked your article about it :)

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Thanks ☺️

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Apr 8Liked by Fran Soto

Cool #3 it is. I shall take and practice it consistently. Sometimes I feel I create my own problems by overdoing and setting up for burnouts. I don’t always setup myself for burnout but probably just over excited on some projects, nevertheless I should be mindful. Good reminder. Thanks and I like this community that help me keep a check on myself.

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I'm glad you liked the article, Anjana.

All of these things are not new, but many concepts I don't start applying until I see how someone interprets them. I hope this article can be that for the people reading :)

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#3 I’m is my favorite too :)

I’ve experimented with different ways to write things down, from sticky notes, to Evernote tasks, and even a written notebook.

Currently, what works for me is in few steps :

1. I plan my week in advance, using a simple google doc. For each area (work/LinkedIn/Leading Developers/Personal finance and so on), I write the things I want to tackle this week.

2. For the work items, I create meeting with just myself in the calendar, for the amount of time I think I’ll need. I space it through out the week. That way when I finish and still didn’t touch project X, I don’t feel anxious, because I know I set for it later in the week.

3. At the end of a day, if new things come up, I create the calendar blocks for them, and deprioritize something else if needed. This allows me to communicate immediately when something that I planned won’t get done, instead of at the last moment. Of course I leave buffers in the calendar, and I try to minimize the amount of things I planned but didn’t do.

4. For the non-work tasks (which could be even more exhausting than the work ones!), I create Evernote tasks, with the absolute deadline by which I should do them. Then in the evening at home (after the baby finally falls asleep 😅), I complete that day’s tasks.

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I am experimenting with giving less priority to the calendar and more priority to a backlog (a simple kanban board in Obsidian/Notion for work/personal items)

For me the hard part is that most times if I put a block in the calendar a day ahead, it'll change because my days are not very predictable.

So I'm planning just half-days ahead, always looking into the kanban board to see what's my next priority.

In the end, we have to adapt our systems to our work situations. What I like is understanding the tools instead of following blindly a method. This allows me to change how I plan (Priority-based or date-based), how much ahead do I plan

Thanks a lot for sharing, Anton!

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Great call on #3.

Only issue that creates for me is because my brain is freed up from remembering so many things its just an idea machine, so I keep spinning up things I need to store over and over. Endless cycle 😵‍💫 but the good kind in a way 😂

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That's the purpose of the brain, in the end, Jordan!

If you didn't know the quote: “Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.” - David Allen

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