"I can never be like those people who program outside of their work hours, contribute to open source, attend conferences, and write articles".--I can pretty much relate on this one as well. And yes, much of what we do here is to earn a living. Exactly as I have said. Thank you for sharing--If I may ask, how did you able to cope up? or are you still in the process of coping up?
And, to be clear, I probably wouldn't start or continue if I didn't have hopes for the project to become profitable one day and let me quit my day job.
I don't know if it is "coping" but I started my own ambitious project that I wanted to make even if I need to do programming. Pretty much all I do these days and months is coding. I like it and I hate it. On one hand, I find it enjoyable to see my skills growing fast because of the challenges and high motivation. On the other hand, I hope the days will come when I won't need to code more than 20 hours a week (or at all, but that's not going to happen).
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