The “Eat, sleep, code, repeat” phrase is intended to be a way of saying “coding is awesome and we want to do it all the time!”. I get the point, I appreciate the enthusiasm, I do.
But there’s a unhealthy subtext that bothers me. The phrase promotes an unhealthy view that programming is an all or nothing endeavor — that to excel at it, it must be the focus of your life. You have to be all in.
Have you heard of the statement “programmers have no life?” that is absolutely wrong! Programmers do have a life.
Programmers have numerous interests and talents far outside their ability code. It could be reading, art, hiking, running, writing, spending time in nature, or just hanging out with family and friends.
A programmer needs to have a truly balanced lifestyle — one that gives the brain some space to breath non-programming air. Life outside of code helps nurture important qualities and skills: inspiration, creativity, patience, flexibility and many more. All of these skills make you a better programmer and you can not acquired them by just coding.
Don’t believe the hype that if you don’t spend all your night awake or non-eating hours programming, you’ll not be a good programmer.
If you want to become the very best programmer you can be, make out time for some non-coding activities. Let your brain stretch it’s legs and breath some non-programming air.
“Eat, sleep, code, repeat”. Please don’t!