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Discussion on: I feel worthless when I'm unproductive

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victorandcode profile image
Victor Cordova

Hello Imani, hope I can help you with this very stressful period. Thanks for sharing your thoughts so openly, it's a great first step towards taking action and finding your way towards your goals.

I empathize with you because I've gone through periods where I've felt overwhelmed by the sheer amount of things to learn in tech or by a lack of motivation. You're not alone in this and I'm certain many developers go through this.

I recommend you spend some time defining very clearly what are your goals and priorities. A mistake I've made in the past is to not prioritize how I spend my time so I can measure my progress. Free time is a double-edged sword, if you lack the discipline it's no good. Create clear goals with deadlines and numbers so you can measure progress. You said you wanted to invest time in LeetCode. First of all, why do you want to do so? How many problems do you want to solve? By when? How are you going to do it? How can you spit this into smaller milestones, say 2 problems per week?

Also, if you don't schedule it, you are likely not to do it. How do you organize your time? Do you have fixed times each day to work on your goals? Create a routine for yourself so you move forward with your goals.

Don't overestimate the amount of time you have and focus. Even with all the time in the world, you won't be able to finish all the things you'd like to do fully. Pick which objectives are the most important for this year and then which of those are most important for this quarter. Even if you focus on a single one and finish it, it'll feel amazingly rewarding.

Another hidden danger of free time is to fall prey to social networks. One solution to this is to restrict yourself from using them. I use the Distraction Free Youtube chrome plugin to keep me off youtube when I want to be focused.

Finally, keep a growth mindset. Even if your leet code programming isn't successful at first, you will gain knowledge and learn, that is the objective. You'll keep growing and progressing throughout your career. It will get easier :)

Hope this is of help

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maniflames profile image
Maniflames Author

My personal goals are not very 'S.M.A.R.T.' but I probably should probably define them that way because you can't hit a target that doesn't exist. I do have fixed times on working on some of my goals but not all of them (right now my bachelor's thesis is populating most time slots in my schedule). Thanks for your input, sometimes I do forget that eventually I'll grow over time :)

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