"Back in the day" I used to work 16 hour shifts as a EMT. After work I'd come home and spend a few hours each night working on my side gigs. Sometimes I was working on a freelance gig, but most of the time it was a pet project. Which was fantastic, because I really enjoyed myself. I couldn't wait to get home to pick up where I left off.
I thought that once I was a full-time developer I'd do more of these pet projects. Man, was I wrong! I feel like I have less free time to work on side gigs than ever. I am working 12-16 hours a day on client work. (or things directly related to my business) Once I call it quits after working on client projects, I find that I am back to working on pet projects into the wee hours of the night/morning.
I get such a thrill out of seeing my ideas come to life. It is a blessing to have the skills to do so. Hands down my favorite part of being a developer is the creation process. Thinking up something, and creating it out of thin air (seemingly). I love this feeling and I hope it's something that I never lose.
There is something magical about building something with your mind and your hands. Something that other people might even find useful... So useful in fact that they pay money to use it! I am so excited about waht lies ahead over the weeks to come. I can't wait to share some of my pet projects with you latter this year once I'm ready to show them off.
I hope you make time to do the things that add personal happiness to your life. One of those things for me is coding. Whatever it is for you, make sure you make time to endulge yourself a bit.