Review – Off Balance: Getting Beyond the Work-Life Balance Myth to Personal and Professional Satisfaction – Books for Devs

Please use my links to purchase the book, it doesn’t cost extra and helps me continue to put out more reviews.

This is my first post in the” Books for Developers” series.

This book turned out to be much better than I thought, I would easily give it a 4.5/5. I hope to share a few nuggets from it that you might be able to apply to your career as a developer, and in more ways that you probably think.

The first nugget that I got out of this book is that “Systems drive behaviors”. This key concept presented by Kelly is not original, but perfectly stated. As developers, we can decide how we want to code and how “diciplined” (channelling my inner Uncle Bob here) we would like to be. We can use systems to force us into the correct coding, communicating, and quality behaviors that we want. While this book doesn’t go into how to make those specific systems, it does touch on other key ideas regarding systems, satisfaction, and work.

One of Kelly’s main points, while being a self-admittedĀ  long hours guys, is that people want satisfaction in life over the idea of “balance”.

Another point is that if you want to excel in your career, you will have to put in more than the standard work hours. That being said, the most impactful part of the book is a speech by “Tom”. I don’t want to give it away exactly what Tom says, but the gist of his ideas is centered around priorities.

What type of Developer should get this book?

  • You want to know how to Prioritize your life and your goals
  • You want to have more of a purpose each day and get more daily satisfaction
  • You want to know how systems work from a practical level and start to use them to make you more satisfied and productive as a person

Buy The Book

I’m just scratching the surface on the nuggets contained in this book. I hope to compile some Anki notes soon on some of the points. Maybe someday I will share them.

Let me know how you liked this review and how I can improve it!

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