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HOW TO STAY MOTIVATED AS A PROGRAMMER IN 2020

pflash profile image Precious adeyinka ・9 min read

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'Progress is progress no matter how small'

The year has just begun, and It's okay to feel you are not making progress sometimes, we all do, in fact, I do the most, and that is the reason I have been holding back from blogging (Impostors Syndrome). But luckily I always find a reason to keep going on and on non-stop. So, I thought if you are in this position, this might be for you.

Let's talk!

Did you read the quote up there, 'Progress is progress no matter how small', exactly that is what it is.!

It happens to be very easy to feel frustrated and overwhelmed, especially when it comes to programming, because of so many reasons I can't possibly list out here. I mean the wealth of resources available on the net nowadays, the tech stacks, name it, there are just so many and it takes very little effort to become frustrated and give up. But the good news is, I might have discovered the best way to remain motivated while learning to become a programmer.

One of the mistakes I made when starting to learn programming was that I was learning too much and so frequently that I wanted to know it all and now. Where did it get me? Far! Yes far enough to make me aware of a little here and there. But that wasn't enough or will I say the best way to go about it.

The side effect:

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Because I was reading just too much and too frequently, it was so easy to forget things a lot and get overwhelmed because of so many things to know and learn. I thought I was supposed to know everything to become worthy. But I was wrong and now I realize the mistakes I made. That term is called (TUTORIAL PURGATORY) - Now you are stuck with youtube videos, Udemy course, skillshare, google searching, hoarding tabs, uh oh!! now you can see yourself, I gotcha!!!

And now for you, as a beginner Programmer, don't make that mistake FOCUSING ON SYNTAX, you heard me right? Yes! Most beginner programmers focus on syntax, and that is why they all write calculators or HTML forms as their first real project. haha Just kidding! I did that too lol.

But the idea is programming is an art, and the real essence is to solve problems, real-world problems.

Memorize this:
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PROBLEM-SOLVING, not SYNTAX MEMORIZING - did you get that now?

Alright, on to the good stuff, I know you are itching to hear it already, alrighty!

I have a few little tasks that you have to sacrifice though.
Here we go!

FIVE THINGS TO FOREVER REMAIN MOTIVATED IN WHATEVER YOU ARE LEARNING (not just programming):

1

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You are probably tired of hearing this one - HAVE A SOLID PLAN (That means have the end goal in mind) - Someone would say, how do I plan when I don't even know enough about it yet! DO YOUR HOMEWORK!!! Go ahead and research... Having your end goal in mind is very crucial, and it will save you a lot of stress from learning a bit of this and that without anything to show off for.

Let's bring it home a bit, if you want a career in programming and you want to apply for a job, the first thing you need to be able to provide is the proof that you are the person for the job, what do I mean? Show Your Work, where is your Home Work, what have you done or been doing, what things did you break? (That basically means Do you have a portfolio, where are your project, what are you going to show the employer?)

I feel bad writing this article at this point because I was a victim of this for a long time, I knew a lot of things, but I didn't know it wasn't enough until I have to put it all together into an App for an employer to believe, get the idea?

So, you want to learn to program, be it Web or Mobile Apps, make sure you have an end goal in mind, be it a mobile app that helps you solve your math assignments, or reminds you when to wake up, or keep track of your life, a personal portfolio Web App or whatever, just have something has an end goal to build at the end of the day?

2

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STAY FOCUSED - A lot of people miss it here, there are so many things distracting you, your friends might tell you PHP is lame, JAVA is for babies, whatever don't listen to them. Even the internet is your number one source of distraction, you are on youtube someone somewhere is raining ads on your screen, and it goes like "UDEMY 70% Discount become a LISP programmer in 7 days" nonsense! It's a trap, I am telling you because I know, don't click that link. I can say this because I know, I have over 1000 subscriptions for different things and it is bad now I am stuck because I feel I need to finish it all and know it all and get all the certificates in the world. NO NO NO!

Memorize this:
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A step at a time, little progress every day makes a lot of difference at the end of the day

Little rain droplets, will soon flood your house if you don't stop it

So, number 2 is to be focused on what you want to do, you want to build your portfolio, do it one day at a time, remember I said programming is Problem-Solving right? Now, this is your/the/a problem, and you are learning the ropes, what do you do? Now, you understand the problem clearly, you need a portfolio website, alright, how can you do that, you don't know? research! (Google, youtube) Then create a sprint, a workflow, a timeline to follow through with every day till the deadline, yes deadlines are really important they help you quantify your success, and have measurable goals. You know the Number Crunching game thingy right?

Don't kill yourself, achieve something little you can do every day, like start with the wireframe, design the layout, have an end goal in mind, remember they are interconnected and also do your research, see what other people have done because the truth is we are all good copiers, yup you heard that right! The earlier you know that the better. And then proceed on to something slightly hard, like umm the header and the navigation menus, don't worry there is the documentation for these things.

3

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Next up, JOIN A COMMUNITY - Yes, that sense of belonging somewhere will take you a long way than being a solo programmer, you will learn, better, faster and it will also teach you the habit of working in a team/community of like-minded people, and you will also find similar learners like you and you can ask and answer questions, I mean there are so many benefits of belonging to a community. Now, don't just be the one hiding and secretly learning from the Q&As, PARTICIPATE! it has a lot of health benefits too lol.

Don't be afraid to ask for help, if you don't know how? learn it! After a few bullies from Stack Overflow, you will learn, lol I can remember my very first question like it was yesterday Aha! Talk for another day lol.

4

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CONTRIBUTE TO OPEN SOURCE - Very important, giving back to the community that made you huh, it is like a way of contributing and gaining recognition at the same time (2 in 1), you don't have to be a PRO to do this. One thing with open source is that it will grant you the experience and the knowledge you will need for your next big project or job interview. You will learn a lot faster, from the community and other people on what most matters to you, like how people build software from scratch and all that, kinda stuff. Guess what?

IT

IS

FREE!!!

One key thing though, be smart and follow people that look like they know what they are doing, follow them everywhere, and HIT that notification button to get every single tweet and stories and highlight, just follow up on these guys alright.

5

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REPEAT - Have you gotten to this point? CONGRATULATIONS!!!
Now make sure you repeat the process, I never said it is a one-off. So, go ahead and do it all over again and again and again and again, I will keep saying again if you don't stop me really!

Alrighty, so the idea is to keep at it, right now I am somewhere in the world, righting my wrongs, don't make the same mistakes I made alright, learn better, faster and smarter. I have a word for you though, this year two things are really important, POSITIONING AND NETWORKING, I just wrote in caps. Do you know what that means? Work Smart & Not Hard, because it is easy to work hard. That's why they pay the CEOs big time.

Conclusion:

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One last thing I should have mentioned is BALANCE - strike a balance in your life, everything does not revolve around programming, trust me I can say this anywhere, nobody likes programming more than I do, but you need to do other things too, strike the balance in your lifestyle, I can't tell you what to do as the case may be different with everyone, so manage your time properly, you can be cool as a programmer, yup, take selfies, go to the gym, take a walk, eat healthily, make friends, take a shit, ahahahhahah. who doesn't!
Do anything else, just make sure to STRIKE THE BALANCE!

At this point, if you are still feeling unworthy, PAUSE AND THINK - I want you to sincerely compare yourself from when you were about to read this article and Now that you are at this point, you don't know it, but I am sure you have gained one or two key points already. And if you haven't I think you should give yourself a little bit of time and read this article again, better still find yourself a mentor, I mean real offline mentor. Now, you know what to do!

So, there you go, now take a FIVE from the FIVE MOST IMPORTANT SKILLS TO KEEP YOU MOTIVATED in 2020, and make sure to kick asses okay, you are the BOSS, ain't nobody going to tell you that, you tell yourself.

You are now a FREEMAN!
say NO to TUTORIAL PURGATORY and say yes to PROBLEM-SOLVING - LEARN - BUILD - DEPLOY (LBD).

Spoiler ALert: This article is not an intense discussion on some of the topics I made mention of, and you can grow your knowledge about this things by making research on the internet. That been said, feel free to reach out to me anytime on social media.

I hope I have been able to help someone out there, till next time, PEACE OUT!!!...

Posted on Jan 25 by:

pflash profile

Precious adeyinka

@pflash

I am a Software Developer, Technical Blogger & Consultant.

Discussion

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Nice article! I really enjoyed reading this one, thank you for providing your key thoughts on the matter.

 

I am glad you found it useful,thank you.🙏☺

 

yes I’m started to program I used to start to learn then gave up then start again etc but this time I’m committed to learn with out stopping in few months want to post my journey

Awesome!! that is the spirit bro, you've gotta trust the process, keep me updated of your journey, you can shoot me a message on twitter at twitter.com/preshadeyinka I will be glad to help out! Go go go, I'm rooting for you.