New Dev Year Resolutions

de profile image De Olagundoye ・3 min read

  1. Impostor syndrome is canceled - Sure, I get it. Everyone has it. And while it might be the hottest buzzphrase in our profession, I'd like to stop entertaining it. Because for me at least, sitting around feeling like I suck at writing software is actually outrageous considering I spend - no exaggeration - at least 75% of my waking hours doing it. And not just doing it, but meticulously ensuring that I’m following the best possible practices at all times. This year I’m going to give myself some credit. I’m going to take my accomplishments, my growth, and myself as a developer a little more seriously. I’m going to remember that I’ve worked hard to get where I am and that no one on this planet would ever continuously pay me to do something that I’m bad at, because I’m just not that lucky. And when someone compliments me for my technical skill - or anything for that matter - rather than smiling awkwardly or making some kind of self deprecating joke, I’m just going to say thank you.

  2. Get my social life together - This wasn’t on my list of resolutions until I did that math and typed out "I spend at least 75% of my waking hours writing code.” So, I’m just going to leave this here.

  3. READ - There really isn’t much to be said about this one. I haven’t done much reading since college (stack overflow, docs, and my horoscope not counted) and that should be fixed. I’ll probably never be the same bookworm who could read a whole Harry Potter installment in a weekend, but one book a month could do me some good. 12 books in a year. I think I can handle that.

  4. Go on vacation - I’m notorious at work for never taking days off. This year I will take many. Or at least, as many as I am allotted.

  5. Contribute - Just a few weeks ago I attended a workshop where the facilitator ran into an error during his presentation. The entire time he was trying to debug, I had the program running perfectly fine locally because I caught the error earlier while I was coding along. So there I am, watching the facilitator and attendees work through possible solution after solution and I’m just sitting there wanting to say something, and getting overwhelmingly lightheaded from the mere thought of speaking up. At some point, I whispered my finding to nothing and thankfully the person next to me heard and called it out. I tell you what, I did no one a single favor that afternoon. Myself especially. I’ve found that I can be somewhat irrationally afraid of the greater developer community and this has caused me to be a wallflower so to speak. It’s apparent that my best effort to "level up" this year toward my ultimate goal of being the best developer that I can possibly be would involve getting over myself (see resolution #1) and getting more comfortable with contributing. Whether that be to open source projects, or by collaborations, speaking up without fear of being wrong or dismissed, or even just joining technical conversations here on dev.to and other forums. I’ll have to get off the wall completely this year to stay on my personal track.

What are your new "dev year" resolutions?


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ardennl profile image
Arden de Raaij

I love these resolutions and especially #1 resonates a lot. Let's just stop talking ourselves down already and talk about it like it's some condition we can never overcome. We're good at what we do, damn it!

Happy new year and wishing you all the best!

dennyferra profile image
Denny Ferrassoli

"I’ve found that I can be somewhat irrationally afraid of the greater developer community and this has caused me to be a wallflower so to speak."

I had a similar experience but with a first-time presenter. After a minute of my anxiety going through the roof I just decided to speak up and point out the bug. He was able to resolve it and finish his presentation. We chatted afterwards, he thanked me for the help, and we ended up becoming good friends.

My dev year resolution is to actually ship my side projects!

Happy new year and thanks for sharing!

maccabee profile image

I wholeheartedly agree, with the exception of #2, it's even more difficult with young children, though I would trade them for it :smirk:. I'd like to go to local meetups every once in a while though.

While I no longer feel that I have Impostor Syndrome I still get down on myself for mistakes, in code and in life. I need to stop.

I have a similar story to your workshop. I was at a presentation about Angular 2 and why it was chosen for the project, and they got on the topic of code editors. No one know why VS Code has a built in Typescript compiler. I did but I didn't say anything. It's written in Typescript, so why not have a built in compiler.

ben profile image
Ben Halpern

I’ve found that I can be somewhat irrationally afraid of the greater developer community and this has caused me to be a wallflower so to speak.

This feeling a real driving force for what we're trying to build with dev.to

washingtonsteven profile image
Steven Washington

Numbers 3 and 5 are on my list as well. Just saw a talk about contributing to React and Hacktoberfest last year and want to get more onto the OSS train, as well as flexing some coding chops.

As for reading, I haven't been keeping up on stuff since college specifically for coding, so I am picking up books to help me get up to speed. Mostly this resolution is to not be afraid to pay for learning, free tutorials only get so far and are of varying quality. Not that every book is gold-standard amazing, but there are a number of good, well-recommended resources.

de profile image
De Olagundoye Author

I did Hacktoberfest this past October. It was my first dip into open source so I was a bit intimidated to start, but I ended up finding so many projects I could contribute to. I felt rewarded before I even got that free shirt in the mail haha. I highly recommend it to anyone.

fullstacksniper profile image
Falola Tele

Thanks, #2 & #5 are on my list too. Especially #5 but yesterday I tried my best and took some actions so as to get rid of it,kinda happy right now because I'm already seeing the results on social media platforms

leob profile image

I recognize the 'impostor syndrome' but I seem to have it only when doing frontend work, not backend. I think it really stems from the fact that I have no formal education in web/GUI design, maybe it's time to do a course to get the basics down.

So that might be my new year's resolution ... and to finally get a proper website running for my freelancer business.

jfrankcarr profile image
Frank Carr

My #1 for 2018 is a continuation of my 2017 one, get in better physical health. I lost 75 pounds in 2017 and I have 25 more to go. It's just so easy to sit in front of a computer screen all day, consuming carbs while coding, a hard habit to break.

For #2, "Impostor Syndrome"? Yep. I've found that to be an issue with interviewing for jobs recently. I think some interviewers delight in asking obscure language trivia questions or devising unrealistic tests just to make other developers feel bad. I've just started to take the view that companies that interview this way probably aren't good ones to work for anyway. Should I be in a position to interview programmers again this year, I want to make sure my interview questions bring out the best in candidates, not bring out their fears.

For #3 in 2018, I do plan on expanding my knowledge of Angular and on IoT devices. Going back to little computers takes me full circle back to the 80's when I first started programming on little PC's like the Timex-Sinclair and Radio Shack Color Computer.

matheus profile image
Matheus Calegaro

Your list inspired me to add #4 and #5 to my list. I'm definitely going to travel more and share what I've learned even more, specially here at dev.to. I always felt ashamed to publish something that I like or have been learning by fearing that someone would think its too basic or "begginers-friendly". Thankfully, this doesn't happen here at dev, so I feel at home.

About #2, yeah I got you, but I'm willing to see an upturn for the best. Also, therapy is helping me a lot with it.

And my tip to everyone: drink a lot of water, eat healthy stuff and do exercises (go to the gym, go on a bike ride, go for a walk in your neighborhood...). I had needed to get pretty bad on both physical and mental health to realize how these three basic tasks are so important to our lives. In the end of the day, your body is the only place you have to live on.

Happy new year and thanks for sharing!

alephnaught2tog profile image
M. Shemayev

Oh man, we're twins! Down to "I need to refocus on things outside of code" and impostor syndrome and all of it.

vijayr profile image

Good luck De !

Lot of this resonates to me too.

andres profile image
Andrés Pérez

n° 2 resonates a lot with me :(