The Dark Side of Becoming a Self-Taught Developer
Is programming for you?
“A season of loneliness and isolation is when the caterpillar gets its wings. Remember that next time you feel alone.” — Mandy Hale
The self-taught developer journey has never been this popular years ago. As technology progress, more and more are curious and dreamt of joining on board.
There has been a massive increase in mentoring, several websites have aroused offering services like boot camps and guides to everyone who wanted to be part of these elite-looking nerds while some are dreaming to start their own startup one day.
Whatever end-goal you have in mind, this article will focus on the hidden things, realities that they don’t tell, the hard truth that these people hide, but I believed everyone should know the good and the bad side, not to discourage you but to help you prepare of what’s ahead.
Do you have what it takes?
This isn’t just about the skills, nor your brain cells.
However, this is very important that not everyone talks about.
Becoming a developer is very difficult, so you have to be ready, brace yourself for a bumpy road ahead. You will fail, you will struggle, it will frustrate you, it will disappoint you, I lose count of how many times I cried.
I got so scared for quite some time; it was very uncomfortable the first couple of years; You do not know how many times I wanted to quit, oh you have no clue.
But here’s the thing, you have to persevere.
No matter how hard the journey gets, break it, be so stubborn that no matter how many times they try to knock you down, get back up.
Be the most stubborn person in the world, if you have to, if it's too much, you probably just need to take a day off, if you feel sick and weak trying to punch the day, you just need a good long sleep, or even just a walk outdoors for some fresh air.
The thing is that no matter how scared you are or ashamed or frustrated, just breathe for a while and get back up.
If you truly want it, if you desperately need a change, a breakthrough, then you can’t afford to give up.
And if you are still thinking if becoming a developer is for you, then ask yourself these questions, are you willing to give up everything, are you willing to sacrifice the next 12–24 months of your life doing nothing but hard work, debugging, learning math, punching the syntax after syntax, finishing a boring Bootcamp, sticking to the everyday plan with nothing but work while your friends are living the ‘you only live once’ life?
Is Programming for you?
You gotta stop questioning yourself whether you are stupid to take on this profession where it does nothing but solve complex problems for algorithms and math and designing the best system for corporations.
There are no reasons to be intimidated, these are all skills, and the fact is we can learn skills, it will take time though but it is possible, it all depends on your willingness to do hard work and a solid discipline, and non-negotiable commitment.
You have been asking the wrong question, stop doubting if you have the brain cells to make it, but rather ask yourself if you will do all the hard work? Are you willing to sacrifice your next couple of years? Do you have the guts to take it all in and just move forward no matter what?
That’s the only thing you need to survive this journey.
And if the answer is still yes, then there you go.
Check out these 10 Best Tutorials for Self-taught developers.
Why are you here?
Finding that ‘why’ may sound clingy and dramatic but trust me on this when everything feels like it’s the end of the world, it will be the only thing that can save you.
Everyone needs a tap in the back, everyone would crave some encouragement and support from your partner, family, and friends.
The ‘you can do it!’ is just a temporary patch, eventually, when the energy slows down when the hard part inclines, those temporary feeling will fade and you will have nothing but yourself, and from experience, I tell you this, this is only just the beginning.
The journey never ends
And everything mentioned above will take a lifetime.
If you are just starting, trying to get that first developer job is like walking into the unknown, it’s a very long road full of struggles, ups and downs, and walking into the unknown without really knowing how much longer it takes before we can even start to see the light can be quite frustrating.
But if you ever find yourself worrying, let me give you this one solid piece of advice that I have learned after all the struggles I have been through in my 30 years of existence.
One thing you have to know is that I have always been different, I never fit in, my mind is everywhere, and I enjoyed peace, the quietness on my own.
We think a lot, then we worry a lot, especially about the future. The next time you find yourself in this situation, it is best to snap it out, stop it.
Because the reality is that time will continue to tick no matter what we do if you choose to worry and deal with all the anxieties or choose to enjoy the present, enjoy whatever’s in front of us.
It’s important to think and plan what’s ahead, but it is also important to think of what we can do now in the present if we focus and continue to take one step at a time, taking challenges one at a time, breaking the obstacles, before you know it you have arrived.
You can go through whatever, no matter how big the roadblock is, everything will work out eventually, it doesn’t matter if we make mistakes, what’s important is we learn from it and do our best not to let it happen again.
All our worries and challenges will always be there from time to time it will appear, eventually, so we might as well just enjoy and let it come when it comes because we will still be going to punch it in the face, anyway.
When worrying comes up, let’s make it a habit of taking it as a reminder that we needed a break, a rest, a walk or simply just do the things that we love doing outside work.
So go on, create your life the way you wanted it to.
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