I was reading this article on Lifehacker the other day and realized how true it was.
This is how I’ve often felt about programming until recently. I’ve been a programmer since the 7th grade. Throughout the rest of grade school, highschool, and college (somewhere around 10 years) I have continuously been writing software. Most of the time it was self taught and working on little things I thought would be fun to make. 10 years later and only now do I feel confident about my skills as a programmer.
Maybe I’m just a slower learner, but every programming course, every programming book I read made little difference in my work produced. I start to know about better practices and tried to incorporate them if it was obviously a good fit. When it comes down to it though, working is the only thing that made me better. A lot of my classmates only write code for school. One asked me how I could possibly have built my own website. I just looked at him and shrugged. It’s what I enjoy so I do a lot of it and if I love it, there’s no reason I shouldn’t do this as my day job.
I’m sure you’ve heard the saying that it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert. # Well it’s true. You’ve got to work, solve problems on your own, and keep challenging yourself to get good. It’s not glorious. I’ve spent countless hours alone with my laptop hacking on code. Do I regret not spending my time with other people? Some times I do, but in the end, this is what I enjoy and now that I feel confident of my skills and have finished college, I can do what I want. I have more experience than my classmates because I worked hard. This gives me freedom in many areas that they don’t have.
Work hard. It makes a difference. Don’t do things you don’t like, and certainly don’t give up things that you’ll regret. Plus, if you’re anything like me, you’ve got dreams of changing the world. Quit dreaming and make it a reality. In fact, close your browser and go do some damn work.comments powered by Disqus