I'm currently planning a career move, and would love some feedback on my particular situation.
I've currently got about 10 years experience working on C#/.NET in various companies, with experience in things ranging from code design and unit testing to .NET low-level concepts and security. I have found these pretty challenging and interesting.
But lately I've developed quite an interest in lower level languages, particularly C, C++ and Rust. I'm really amazed at the diversity of solutions that these sorts of technologies can be used in, while I find that C#/.NET is mostly used to build web or desktop apps/systems that automate business processes.
Currently, I'm trying development in these lower-level languages during my free time, but I find that I'm just not able to progress as fast as I want, nor am I as fresh and energetic to putting in another 2-3 hours daily for it after my regular work day.
So, I'm planning on taking 6 months to 1 year off work, to fully invest in self-study, working on some personal projects in this new tech and maybe even contributing to some open-source projects. I've got a plan in order to avoid the risk of taking time off and just wasting time.
Another reason I'm doing this is to avoid the "need" to start as a junior in the new tech. I guess the main concern future employers will have is what I've been doing in that time gap, for which I believe I'll have a proper response: working on personal and open source projects in C and C++.
I wonder if I am committing some sort of career suicide. I'm fairly confident in my plan, but would love to see some other opinions of the community.
How will such a decision potentially affect my return to a regular job in the new technology?