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Ben Halpern for CodeNewbie

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How Do You Make Lifelong Learning a Habit?

Staying up-to-date with the latest technologies and trends is essential for career growth and professional success in such a rapidly evolving field. Without continuing education and development, workers in the tech industry risk becoming obsolete and being left behind.

But it can be challenging to find the time and motivation to keep up! Being part of a community like DEV is a great way connect with other learners in the tech industry, but it’s just one piece of the pie. You need opportunities to apply what you’re learning, maybe work with a mentor, attend conferences, attain certifications, and more.

What other suggestions do you have for folks in the tech industry who’re looking for ways to incorporate continuing education into their regular routine?

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Top comments (13)

developerdoran profile image
Jake Doran

I think its also important not to stress too much learning and risk burnout. Taking time to reflect where you are and how you got there is vital to understanding where to go next. Equally, you need take the time to be at every level of the competency scale for learning to have an impact. Finally, learning comes naturally when you're open to new perspectives and view points, strive to take on new responsibilities and work as part of a diverse team :)

rainleander profile image
Rain Leander

Making lifelong learning a habit can be a lot like coding. Here's a simple guide to help you get started:

  1. Be curious: Just like debugging, always be curious and look for new things to learn. Keep exploring new topics and asking questions.
  2. Make it fun: Find engaging resources like coding games, tutorials, or interactive websites. Enjoying the learning process keeps you motivated.
  3. Little by little: Treat learning like iterative development. Make small, consistent progress by learning a bit every day, and over time you'll see great results.
  4. Join a community like Connect with other code newbs or experienced developers on forums, social media, or in-person meetups. Share what you've learned and get insights from others.
  5. Practice, practice, practice: Just like refining your code, keep practicing and applying your new skills. This will help you internalize and retain the information better.

Remember, making lifelong learning a habit is like committing to a GitHub repo. Regular updates and improvements will make you a better programmer and a lifelong learner!

raddevus profile image
raddevus • Edited
  1. Build things (web apps, desktop apps, scripts to make things easier).
  2. Make things that you want.
  3. Be curious about how things work.
  4. Look around and examine products (web apps, electronic devices, etc.) that exist but don't quite do what you want. Then, research how you would build the same thing while adding the features you want.
  5. Take things one small step at a time. (Example: about 8 years go I wanted to be able to open my garage door with my phone. I knew the garage door motor was activated by a switch. I discovered that if I could remotely activate an electronic relay I could solve the problem. Next, I need to discover how to use Bluetooth (included on every smart phone) to send a message that would activate the relay. I researched and found a hobbyist bluetooth device. I researched how to program an Arduino. etc. I took one step at a time and built something I wanted. I learned tons.
danbailey profile image
Dan Bailey
  1. Understand how you learn best -- are you a do-er, a reader, or an observer? Focus on learning via how you learn best, but don't neglect the other methods.

  2. Schedule time to learn. I literally block out at least 45 minutes a day and just absorb. Whether that's a section of a Udemy course, delving into a book, or actually executing and experimenting with what I've learned, I make sure to use that 45 minutes.

  3. Have a macro schedule. Have an overall plan for what you're learning, and have an idea of where you're going from week to week. Leave flexibility in the schedule for new stuff that comes up.

  4. Venture afield. Don't just stick to one subject like web dev -- dig into other topics. You'll be surprised when that extra knowledge becomes useful.

  5. Be curious.

jonrandy profile image
Jon Randy 🎖️ • Edited

By making every effort to maintain a childlike, curious mindset - then learning always feels more like play...

⚙️ 💻 🔣 New language / library / concept = 🧸 🚗 🚀 New toy!

michaeltharrington profile image
Michael Tharrington

That's an awesome way to approach things!

jmfayard profile image
Jean-Michel (agent double)

By making time for it, I work four days a week

fnh profile image
Fabian Holzer

Did you conciously reduce from full-time to 80% to explicitly use the remaining workday for continued professional development - or for your general education (as seen apart from what one would consider immediately useful for the job)?

jmfayard profile image
Jean-Michel (agent double) • Edited

I decided to value my time and interests in general.
What to do with the 20% is up for everyone to decide.
But I'm a dev, so learning is the only thing I'm really good at

jwilliams profile image
Jessica williams

Making lifelong learning a habit requires dedication, commitment, and a willingness to learn new things. Start by setting aside dedicated time each day or week to read, watch educational content or attend classes. Create a plan and set specific goals for what you want to learn, and regularly review and update your progress. Embrace the mindset that learning is a continuous process, and seek out new opportunities to learn and grow.

miffens profile image
  • I wrote a post on not stressing too much about 100%ing courses -
  • I also enjoyed
  • Twitter and other social media where tech folks hang out are a good way to get daily, bite-sized pieces of news that slowly adds up over time. If the feed you scroll daily, or your social group is casually talking about topics you need to stay "current", it organically makes it easier to keep up
wrongbyte profile image

Spaced repetition. A simple, low effort and daily habit to keep for life.

pazapp profile image

Focusing on the area you like the most and learn as much as you can. Search for videos and web resources talking about the same things.