Working in Information Technology can be anything but relaxed. It’s a fast-paced, ever changing world when it comes to computers and to keep up with it all, you have to stay on top of it all. Of course, this is one of the reasons that people in this profession get paid as much as they do. Sometimes they may seem like miracle workers, but it’s all a very calculated system that takes years to perfect.
As one journeys deeper into the land of computers, what you gain in technical knowledge is nothing compared to what you gain in mental fortitude to keep it all running. If you’re lucky, you get into a company that is willing to spend something on their technology. If you’re not, then you try and make due with balls of yarn that a couple of hamsters are powering, which everyone keeps insisting is a server.
It’s an overwhelming area and as I have a younger employee who is just setting out into it, he’s experiencing a lot of the things that I remember going through. Mainly it’s just how to deal with the overall frustration of it all and the fact that it is not a job where you get congratulations once you’ve completed a massive project. Usually, you just have to listen to everyone else complain about how this is different and how that doesn’t work the way it did and so on, and so on. Not something to do for the weak of heart.
As you go on, you learn that you are doing it for yourself. This in turn gives you the confidence to make the decisions that you have to make, because of the pride you can take in doing a job well. Of course, this is probably one of the first big turning points in the field, because you are either able to remain level-headed about it to the point of enjoying your work and being able to block out the complainers, or you get far too conceited about your work and stop listening to people altogether. Obviously, the latter is not the way to go as it will get you fired in a hurry.
I think there is another point you reach in the field, wherein you reach a certain age and technology may lose its appeal for you. I’ve seen this quite a bit in people who reach their thirties and don’t feel like learning the new technologies as they think what they’ve learned is quite good enough. Naturally that isn’t the case, as most things get better as they get older in the computer world. Trying to apply a method that worked ten years ago to a long-term plan for the next ten years isn’t going to work.
Of course, once you get past all of this and learn to bathe in your inner geek, it can be quite a rewarding job, since you get to play with and purchase things you’d never have gotten to mess with on your own.