Well this is awkward timing. But unrelated.

About 8 weeks ago I decided I needed to take a 2 week break from work to prevent me from burning out. It was a hectic winter, spending 3 months as tech lead for the Product Gaps team at GDS, providing the missing puzzle pieces for the transition of the final few agencies to GOV.UK, followed by returning to MOJ Digital to try and support the 50 strong team of talented developers through a period of transition from startup to a stable component of MOJ.

As you may know I have suffered from depression and anxiety all my adult life, and I was beginning to get those tell tale signs that I was not heading in a good direction, but I managed to catch it in time. Rather than being bed bound, I have managed to have a rather fun and very relaxing summer break. However, as 2 weeks have turned into 8, it’s become increasingly clear that I’m not going to be heading back in to the civil service any time soon.

This is not any statement on the current state of digital in government. Is everything perfect? Of course not. It never was and never will be. The next stage of digitising government is just as ambitious and mind-numbingly challenging as the last few stages. I’m just as excited by the oppurtunities of digital government as I was when I spoke these words. And I still believe that the most important thing is to continue bringing in the best digital talent this country has.

However, for now, I’m tapping out. I’m not sure what’s next. I have a vague desire to enjoy not being under civil service code for a little while and explore a more partisan political world, but nothing planned as yet. I am in no hurry to jump in to a permanent role any time soon, so I’m hoping to spend some time doing bits and pieces here. If you have a need for some code to be written, please do get in touch, and I’d be happy to write that code for you.