WordCamp Halifax 2017

WordCamp Halifax lanyard and thank you cardBack in May, I spoke at WordCamp Halifax, the first ever WordCamp in Atlantic Canada. I spoke a bit in another post about my motivations for applying to speak at WordCamps this year.

When I applied to talk at WordCamp Chicago, I also applied to WordCamp Halifax. A Canadian WordCamp first? An excuse to visit a province/city I’d never been to before? Yes please!

I know, I know. Who am I? An introvert that is out there giving talks all over the place all of a sudden.

What gets an introvert out of their shell? A topic that’s really important to them.

I was an advocate for mental health prior to entering the tech industry and since that transition have only continued more-so as there are particular challenges that seem to be extra concentrated amongst us.

I think it’s important to create a conversation so people feel less alone in their journeys and struggles as well as expand our capacity to offer resources.

Don’t accept things if they’re not working for you.

You deserve to be happy and healthy.

The tech industry has a way of presenting certain behaviours as desirable and often these traits are NOT sustainable.

Whether we’re developers, designers, in IT support or QA, we are puzzle-solvers who use our brains every day for our jobs. Our brains are important and taking care of them should also be seen as such.

I think it’s important to highlight the importance of preventable systems for our health rather than reparative. Reparative systems are important too, of course, but wouldn’t it be ideal if we could lower the number of people who experience burnout? Wouldn’t it be amazing if our employer’s and ourselves encouraged and supported self-care?

As I continue to hear more about people’s various experiences with mental health in the tech industry, I would love to revisit and tweak this talk to provide additional information and resources to new audiences.

And, for anyone who is interested, the slides for it are over at Speaker Deck.