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So who could imagine besides Bill Gates which were dealing with virus since windows 95, that we would have much of the event in our lifetime? This virus is awful for lots of reasons, it spread fast, it’s world-wide and or either we die due to disease or because the economy(loosing or jobs), there is a domino effect, even it the virus do not get you in the first strike, economically it will eventually affect you. I’m used to remote work for +10 years I’m living a gypsy life, 6 months in Brazil, 6 months in USA or EUROPE so I can consider myself a kind of digital nomad; During the week, I don’t see much difference considering my routing. However, on the weekends, I felt the difference. Often I used to go to nature to visit some parks with waterfalls(not the daily waterfall project dudes :-) ) or a beach, visit a brewery or bar, go to a good new restaurant which I did not try out, you know the normal things. Weirdly enough now I go out to groceries and very quickly with lots of safety procedures(wearing a mask, lots of hands sanitizer, dribbling people, staying 2 meters away, taking a shower when I get home). Lots of companies are being forced to be Digital now and allow remote work since there is no other option. I thank God for allowing me to work with technology and be able to work remote but there are people who do not have this option.

The Economy Ice Age

I’m not an economist but it does not take a genius to realized whats going on. Startups are being hit it pretty hard, investors are holding money and people losing their jobs. Uber had a massive rides reduction. Airbnb also hit pretty badly. It looks like only Food Delivery is growing in current times. Cinema, Games/Films production is basically over, Airplanes companies are bankrupting. Even Mickey was hit pretty badly. One way or another your company will be hit. It’s not a matter of IF but When will happen. So everybody will become poor which is bitter but fine, considering the fact lots of people are dying or have zero jobs.

Preachy People

Right now there is all sort of preachy people saying oh do this, do that. Just do whatever you want. However, being preachy too I would say you want to present 3 things:

  1. Your Health — So Stay at home.
  2. Your Job — Deliver is more important than ever.
  3. Your Sanity — Try to have fun.

There are people saying oh you should get out of the quarantine speaking french or learning 3–4 new things. In part is bullshit but in other part is not, if you can great if you cannot is fine. Saving money is a good idea but is also bad for the economy. Eventually, we will get our of the quarantine but our lives will be different.

Now everybody decides they want to produce content. I’m probably making it worst too since I post links in slack like crazy and writing new content right now. In my own defense, I was producing 2–4 posts in my blog way before the quarantine, I have this blog for +14 years and +500 posts. But I get it. So yeah, everybody wants to do a LIVE and there are tons of live events for free and available for us which was not before. To be 100% clear, in parts, this is good, good stuff for free right, but all at once in a flood, not a stream makes anxiety goes up since you have these mixed feelings like Oh I dont want to miss it, oh shit I need to work.

So You dont need to reading, watching, or see it. Do it at your own pace, easy said them done. A couple of days ago a friend of mine, recommend the DevOps Sumit. It was hard for me, but I had to let it go, I did not watch it. to be honest, I was watching in a second monitor while working the Fail Over Conf. However, looks like the DevOps event was multiple days so.

Blogging was something I was always doing before, so actually I reduce my speed during the COVID-19 instead of increasing, I’m the same person, not doing anything different. I actually took 1,5 weeks off to finish FF7R(total 41h of gameplay — but now I’m back). So you should expect my normal stream of posts per weekly basis.

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Dealing with anxiety

That’s the ought part. Before you easily could take a walk, well now is not the case. I never consider myself ad an anxious person, my friends might disagree. However lately I was feeling a bit anxious, not only because of the COVID-19 but because I switch jobs just a few days before the lockdown begins and I was almost 11 years on the same company so yeah it got pretty strange and anxious. After 3 weeks at the new company, I say I’m feeling much better, of course given the circumstances you know. However besides the company aside feeling anxious is a thing, I saw my anxious level grow, for me was not because I was stuck but due to the stream of content coming up and the need to be the focus and deliver things.

Brazil is one of the top countries with high anxiety levels. Imagine now with all that is going on with so many people dying and the economy melting literally. For the there were 3 simple things I did it helped me a great deal:

1. Turn Off All Slack notifications — even from my work. (Looks slack on my own time).
2. Start using the Intention plugin for chrome (block your sites, so you mind interruptions).
3. Discipline, putting in my mind to get things done and doing it so.

So turning down slack notifications had an instant relief to me. It helped a great deal. The Intention extension for chrome is really good because it gives you 3 important things:

1. Observability — So you know how much time is spending on each site.

2. Control — Because when you enter a web site, it reminds you how much you spend there.

3. A Habit/Mindset — So it re-creates a habit/mindset to be focused and regain your focus.

One of the cool things about the intention plugin is that you can set up a schedule, so let’s say after 8 PM you are allowed to see any website again or you might disable over the weekends or not if you prefer being away from distractions. Discipline and faith are often key to everything in life. If you say I will do this, that’s 90% of the job already done, so this could sound silly, but it works, at least for me.

Having Fun

During these crazy times, it’s important to have fun. Some people feel bad by having fun, consider all is happening outside and in the hospitals but getting crazy or freaking out will not make you any good. So when I say having fun I dont mean forget what’s going on, No. I mean to do stuff that you like, for me, I’m playing PS4 and Steam games. Since the COVID-19 I finish 2 big games: Resident Evil 3(In 5h) and Final Fantasy 7 — Remake(In 41h). I also played some Steam games with my friend like Team Fortress 2 and CS Go. Also few weeks before the COVID-19 outbreak I discovered kosmi and also played some NES and Super Nintendo with my friend too.

Time to time I made Zoom and Hangout call with some friends and in very spare time playing my acoustic guitar. TV Show was a problem for me. Because I was always up to date, so I could not rely much on them bu

t since the lockdown, for me (12 march) I finished: 1st season of The Swamp Thing, the 1st season of Self-Made, the 1s season of Outbreak, 5th season on Better Call Saul, 1st season of The Messiah and the best one so far, The Tiger King. Right now I’m watching the 6th season of Bosh, which I should finish today.

My First time in Kosmi — Playing SNES Final Fight 2 with a friend.

kosmi from Diego Pacheco on Vimeo.

Another important thing to me is Craft beer, Do not worry guys, I’,m not an alcoholic, no drinks on Monday LOL. So I found 2 beers clubs from Curitiba which I’,m using 2–3x per month. Clube do Malte and The Beer Planet.

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(Beer Planet delivery #1 on the Left and Clube do Malte delivery #2 on the right).

The previous job I was working too much (avg ~270 hours per month — now I work much less ~200 hours) so I missed this, but there is a special 9 GAG session just for brazil now. So I was RLOF last night.
The Day after Tomorrow

Eventually, By the End of Q2, we should be out of the quarantine, our life won’t be the same anymore. We will need to keep basic hygiene habits we forgot but also mind that could be a phase 2 of the lockdown or even another outbreak in a few couple of years. The bottom line is we will need Discipline and collaboration more them ever.

I hope by the end of all things, we re-gain our faith in Science and God(Must be pretty pissed with us and throwing all these Egypt-like plagues). One thing should not exclude another and also we value personal relationships and family/friends with for sure we easily could get it for granted but not any longer.

I also hope remote become here to stay and companies do not just get back to their normal routines like never happened because it could easily happen again. If people still had doubts if remote would work I hope we pass that for now. For me, I will for sure visit Florianopolis and have another round of a Pub Crawl with my friends.

Cheers,
Diego Pacheco

Originally published at http://diego-pacheco.blogspot.com on April 26, 2020.

Brazilian, Software Architect, SWE(Java, Scala, Rust, Go) SOA & DevOps expert, Author. Working with EKS/K8S. diegopacheco.github.io (Opinions on my own)

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