DEV Community

Fidelis Solomon
Fidelis Solomon

Posted on

7 steps I wish I followed, when was learning to code

I've been building websites professionally, since 2018. When i started learning to code, it took me about 2 years, of mostly just solving programming challenges, with C#, C++ and python, on "hackerrank" and "codewars", to learn programming. I did not have a direction or a reason in particular for why i wanted to code or why i kept on learning language after language, except that i enjoyed using my mind. I was still an undergraduate, in my 3rd year, when i started learning. Thinking back to that time, i made a lot of mistakes, most of which would have been avoided, if i had followed these seven steps.

NOTE: i believe posts should be brief and straight forward. so this post, like all others will be brief, i promise.

So, Without any further delay...

Here are 7 steps, i would take, if i wanted to start learning, to be a programmer again:

  1. Start with WHY:
    If i had a clearly defined answer / WHY, to a very simple question "why i do i want to be a programmer", before i started learning to be a code. It would have saved me a lot of time and i would have avoided some of the mistakes that i made, along the way. The best thing you can do for yourself, is have a clearly defined reason for why you want to learn to be a programmer. An example of a "good WHY" is, "I want to make $150,000 a year" or "I want to build Softwares, that would make the lives of others easier".

  2. Do your research:
    I'd do a proper research, to find the "best area" to focus my attention, based on my WHY. Since i now know "why i want to learn programming", the next step would be "what field i want to apply my programming skills, to". A good place to start would be, to query google with your why, for example, "How can i make $150,000 a year, as a programmer?" or "How has computer programming made people's lives easier?". Remember this isn't going to be a quick process, so take your time, to do a proper research.

  3. Learning:
    I did not set out to apply my skills to either web development, mobile applications development, data science or anything like that. I was just learning for the sake of learning. But, if i had to do it all over again. The next step would be, to make a "detailed learning plan", before i start learning. That way, what i learn would be guided by what i want to do, with my knowledge of programming. You'd probably have to do a "back and forth" between "Do your research" and "Learning". The easiest path to follow, would be to pay use a platform that's free and reliable, for your learning, like "" or "". We'll talk more about this, in the next step.

  4. Follow a beginner course / programme:
    Since i now have a detailed learning plan, the next step would be to start learning. But what's the best way to learn, my answer to that would be, to "learn by doing" or to "learn with a project". But it's also important, that the foundation for any language you want to learn is strong. So, I'd follow learn from a free website like "" or "". For w3schools: The courses are easy to follow, with examples and an online editor, to practice what you've just learnt. This helps with structuring and organizing what you'll be learning. The next step, when I'm done learning, would be to, select a project and start building it, with what i just learnt. We'll talk more about this, in the next step.

  5. Learn with a project:
    After laying a "strong foundation", for each technology, that i intend learning, based on my research. I'd find a project, to work on. A good place to find projects ideas, would be on "", the provide the project title, description, requirements and a few suggestions, that would have helped make my life easier.

  6. Join a community:
    I'd find a community to Join (mostly for accountability). I think what would have also, made my life easier would have been, if i had joined a community of like minded individuals, on the same learning path as me, like "". The feeling that "i'm not alone" on this, would have been great.

  7. Find an internship role:
    I started too early, looking for roles, that were obviously bigger than my current strengths (mostly cos of the cash), instead of starting small and building my career, one challenge at a time. If i had to do it all over again, the final step would have been to play to my current strengths and limit my search, to only internship roles.

I hope these steps would help make someone's coding journey, a lot easier, that mine was. I guarantee that if you follow these six steps and focus on building your career, with a long term goal in mind, you won't regret.

Top comments (0)