Share your Energy

It will come back to you

Posted on June 26, 2022
The last few of weeks have been an absolute whirlwind, and while I still have the energy from that I'm writing this article. The title is special to me, and it's from Scott Hanselman, who I had the privilege of sharing the stage with as he gave the closing keynote at Umbraco Codegarden conference.

He talked about Mentorship vs Sponsorship, and what that mean in real terms - the talk is available online (here presented at a different conference) and I would strongly recommend you go and watch it. 

One thing he said really struck a chord with me :

Share your Energy. Put out good work. Don't waste your keystrokes. Share your experiences. Be Kind. That energy will come back to you

The key takeaway for me was this one slide :

"Share your Energy. Put out good work. Don't waste your keystrokes. Share your experiences. Be Kind. That energy will come back to you"

Sometime in 2021, in the midst of lockdown when Zoom meetups were the only method we had of seeing other in our communities, a dear friend Ravi Motha sent me a message - he knew that I had been messing around with Docker, that I'd recently written a couple of articles for the excellent 24 days in Umbraco advent calendar and he asked if I'd do a meetup off the back of that.

Thinking seriously about it, since I would be able to adapt the content to a meetup format I agreed to do it. The meetup was well attended and the feedback was good, which led to me adapting the content into two workshop-style articles for Skrift magazine, which added detail about core docker concepts

Those articles led to me submitting a talk idea to Umbraco Codegarden, but also got me thinking that I would be able to do a workshop as part of the conference, so I suggested both those ideas and they were accepted!

Having done conference talks before, but never having run a workshop, I reached out and thankfully the community helped me - Poornima Nayar agreed to co-present the workshop with me and helped me hugely in the run-up and on the day, and I also got some great help and advice from Dan Clarke and Neils Swimburghe which gave me the confidence to go ahead with it.

I also submitted the talk to DDD SouthWest - which pre-pandemic has been one of my favourite conferences, and which was more in the wider .NET community rather than just the Umbraco community, so it was a toe out of my comfort zone.

Around that time I also reached out to the organisers of the local meetup - dotNET South West and offered my help as they were just about returning to Face to face events after being just online for a long time. I was accepted by the team, and had a fantastic time with the first real-world meetup, and have arranged the 2nd in a couple of weeks in July.

Fast forward a few weeks, and my Codegarden talk was very well received, my workshop got some amazing feedback, I have joined the .NET South West admin group and I just finished presenting my talk at DDD South West to a wider .NET audience, also with some great feedback.

I had a lot of fun, I met some amazing people in the community - a lot for the first time and too many to individually name, but I'm totally energised to do more events (after a break of a few weeks, because preparing a talk is tough!).

One final thing I want to include in this, as it's very important to me - looking at all the privilege that my position had given me as a man in tech - freedoms I know are denied to a lot of people, and inspired by Emma Burstow I applied to and joined the Diffs, a community team dedicated to promote diversity in Umbraco - one of the communities I'm actively involved in. 

Share your Energy. If your passion is web development, or OSS, front-end, back-end, testing. If your passion is baking, or writing, or photography - whatever it is - share your energy, collaborate, blog, work with others, help others, bring others up - It will absolutely come back to you, and that's been my experience.

I found a lot of energy from the communities I'm actively involved in. Through activities like this, and through writing about and sharing my experiences at meetups and conferences, conversations and workshops I hope to give some of that energy back, and so the circle continues.

P.s. The videos for the events I mention above aren't yet online, but I'll update the article when they are.