How Chris Klosowski’s Lifestyle Changed by Writing One WordPress Plugin

Chris Klosowski, co-lead developer of Easy Digital Downloads, explains how writing one plugin changed his lifestyle. He left his corporate job to be a full-time distributed worker and being a distributed worker comes with its own set of challenges.

My truest challenge in this new lifestyle is knowing when it’s time to ignore Slack, shut off email, take off the Pebble, and just spend time with my family. It’s a challenge I’m learning to face, and the hardest part is admitting to myself that it’s a problem.

It’s come up in conversation a couple times with my wife, and every time, she lets me know when I’m failing. Honesty here is the key. Not guilt, not anger, just brutal honesty of when I’m not being the best husband and dad because I’m putting work before them.

One of the greatest challenges a distributed worker faces is figuring out the balance between work, family, and personal life. If you’re struggling to find balance, I encourage you to read this post and the nearly 100 comments that follow.

The comments are from people in similar positions trying to figure out how to balance work, life, and family. After nearly three years of being a distributed worker, I’m still trying to figure it out.

10 Comments


  1. Thanks for the link Jeff.

    I somehow missed the Mantra of Family post when it was first published. I’ve got a lot of reading to do now with all these great comments there. :)

    Cheers!

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  2. That’s why I thank the stars that I married an emergency veterinarian. She has no work life balance so there’s no downside to my not having one either! Or something like that … uhm … maybe we should rethink our lives ……..

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  3. Almost everyone wanted to spend more time with their family and work is the only hindrance to that want. Finding ways to earn from home is very difficult. Most skills person’s possess require them to work outside of home and few has skills to work inside the home.

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    1. I think it takes tenacity–but anything you can do in an office, you can do in a home office.

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  4. Congratulations Chris! Although I feel you as for the work-life balance!
    I find it incredibly hard to achieve one as well!

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  5. Being an entrepreneur is a good thing. You can work in your pyjamas. But most of the people believe in working as employees for corporate firms for the sake of experience letters.

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  6. Will have to read that article about familiy.

    One of my wake up calls was when one of my best friends walked in, and basically said that if I would keep working like this it would kill me. Point taken…

    Mean time the bills pour in, and their has to be food put on the table.

    Having a disability somewhat limits my possibilities at times, trying to combine career, with staying up to date, and having a sporty lifestyle (for modelling).

    Taking it a bit more easy now. I say as I just worked all weekend, finished up a job tonight, and am exhausted. Knowing full well that the income has to increase, and it’s the start of the week of a long month.

    This is the reason tough why I don’t publish plugins, I know I could make money of the code I write, but honestly, just the nightmare of having 300 people in my inbox “can you do this”. On the other I started working with open source for a reason, and rather just share the code into the community.

    The onditions is one of the reasons I’m leaving IT, for a more normal existence. Finally understand one programming language, everybody switches to another, if I can spend another couple of years learning that… No, I’m done.

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    1. WordPress and coding have allowed me to do amazing things in my life. I got into working with this because I liked the idea of open source.

      Nowadays, in our country at least, we see recruitment companies taking over the market for PHP jobs, etc. The result being that a lot of the things we believe are important in open source, are getting commercialized.

      So, now you have people who don’t know how to code, saying wle the latest trend is this code and this code, and you should learn that. When? Nobody’s paying for it. So, you’re expected to learn on your own time, and by the time that you learn it, everybody has switched.

      We need a program to get talentend programmers jobs, and keep them educated on the job.

      Not be the spill of corporate decisions to save 10 cents on the dollar by outsourcing to India, and back and forth.

      That’s not why I got into open source.

      I’d rather just spent my time wirting code as a hobby. When I have time. With the open source community this has always worked.

      By the way, I just wrote in because a lot that people are saying. We want to do well. We want to provide for our families. And we get got in this trap where were like, just work. And it’ll solve itself. When at times we have to work smarter and not harder.

      It’s something to keep in mind. It’s not easy. It’s easy to forget at times. And we need good people around us, that watch out for us, and love us, just like we love them. It’s not always about working harder and more. It’s being there for the people around you, and to say it’s o.k. today I’m just going to sit and enjoy the moment.

      FInding the right balance.

      I’m really this discussion is being held, and amazed by how many people are in the same situation.

      “Talk is cheap show me the code”

      LOL

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