Self care is a hot topic these days, and I’m not just talking about face masks. There is a growing movement that underscores the importance of taking time to take care of yourself (in addition to all the other things that you already take time for). You can prevent problems down the road by taking proactive steps to ensure your health and happiness.
What are the best ways to exercise self care as a developer? Here are some quick ones to get you started.
I’ve been thinking about this topic since I read Sarthak's guide to protecting eyes. Here are some quick things you can do today to protect yourself:
- Invest in some glare-blocking blue tinted computer glasses like these on amazon.
- Get yourself a bouncy ball so that you can look away every so often to focus on that.
- You’ve probably already heard of flux. It automatically adjusts your screen to mirror the outdoors, so that you don’t disrupt your sleep schedule.
As developers, many of us rely heavily on our hands’ ability to type out code. But spending 8 hours on a keyboard can be hard on them.
- Consider investing in an ergonomic keyboard. If you’ve got a favorite call it out in the comments--there are many different styles and shapes.
- Doing these stretches just once a day or week will help prevent carpal tunnel.
Many of us are familiar with the perils of sitting 8 hours in a desk for 5 days a week.
- Standing desks: if your office allows it, standing desks are good for you! Although claims that standing burns lots of calories have largely been refuted, standing desks can help your blood sugar return to normal faster after eating if you’ve spent more time standing, and some find them beneficial for the back/neck/shoulders.
- Regular stretching or walk breaks: Take a break and walk around! Even a short walk can have great health impacts and a walk will help improve your mood as well (see below).
Research suggests that short breaks between spurts of productivity can provide essential mental rest for overworked minds.
- Try using an extension like this one which enforces the pomodoro method (a system that breaks up 20 minute intervals with short periods of rest) with regular reminders.
- A walk break can improve your mood according to this piece from the NYT on the benefits of a lunchtime break. Even a short one can make you more enthusiastic, less tense, and more able to perform your job for the rest of the day.
What are your best suggestions for making day-to-day life as a developer more fun?
- Customize your terminal. Here are some general guidelines to get you started.
- Colorful keyboards! Here’s a fun scrabble one.
- An office plant
What are the ways you exercise self care as a developer?