Tuesday, May 3, 2011

My Inability to Focus on My Job

For the past few weeks, I have been sitting in front of my computer, staring at code that I simply cannot decipher. A couple of weeks ago, I was given a rather complex project that involved a lot of analysis and not too many code changes. I hit a brick wall, and simply could not follow the logic. My boss and I had a talk about why it was taking me so much time to complete a project that I would normally turn around in a few days.
I told her I could not focus on the task at hand, and that this has never happened before. She knows me well, and has seen me crank out enormous amounts of work very quickly, some of which has been extremely complex. Granted, the logic for this project was pretty convoluted, and we worked on it together for days until we found the solution.

For whatever reason, I simply cannot focus on my job, and even the simplest tasks are beyond my reach. I don’t know what’s happening; this is not like me, and I usually can read code and understand the underlying logic within a matter of minutes. But lately I look at the code in front of me and am at a total loss.
I am useless unless I can somehow turn this around. I need to figure out what’s blocking me from doing what I usually do so well. My boss knows that I have been suffering from depression, and that this may have something to do with it. She suggested I take a leave of absence and get help. I may have to do just that. Sitting in front of a computer all day and being unable to do anything only makes matters worse.
Perhaps my bipolar disorder is creeping up on me and destroying my ability to concentrate. I have heard that this is a possibility. Then again, this may be something temporary that can be treated with the right medication. I am not exactly sure what is going on, and that’s what bothers me the most.
I want my job back. I want to be able to sit down and crank out code the way I have been doing for the last four years. My boss has always been able to count on me to get multiple projects done well before my deadlines, and my users are always happy with what I produce.
I have always had a good work ethic, and I take pride in doing my job well. If my disease is keeping me from doing my job, I will fight it tooth and nail. I will do whatever it takes to remain productive and happy in a career that spans several decades in which I have gained a lot of respect. The last thing I want is to succumb to my disease and end up on disability.

Love to all!

James M. Weil

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