From my observations, a disproportionately and noticeably high number of successful programmers have weak family/community relationships, poor health (usually in the form of obesity), and narrow social circles…
I suggest you to quit what you are doing (you’ll probably call it a job, I call it cubicle slavery). If your job doesnt gives you the time to have a life outside the 8am-5pm period you are not living, you are merely surviving.
I run a team of 6 programmers which is part of a company that employs 5k programmers of all ages, flavors and colors. I haven’t seen a overweight hermit loser in years, I know only two guys that wave weight related problems and those are caused by a glandular disieasse.
Here is my list of hobbies:
- Digital Painting.
- Active Member of the Foundation for Reason and Science.
- Makeup bed time stories for my children (I have 2).
- I go at least 2 times a week to the movies with my wife followed by a long dinner to discuss the picture we just saw.
- World of Warcraft (I have a lvl 70 tier 5 Enhancement Orc Shaman) and I run a rapidly growing guild The Order of the Lidless Eye =) .
Did I mention I live in a 3 world country which happens to be the 2nd most obese of the world? (Mexico).
I don’t think that your current state is caused by your problem or as you call it programming job.
The bottom line is… you don’t need to sacrifice the really important things in life to make a solid programing career, you just need love (to endure asshole-ness) and a bit of discipline (to grow).