Yesterday I participated to my first developer conference – #LockdownConf. It was amazing, that’s all I can say about it! 🙌
While listening to the great speakers, I got an idea for an article. More specifically, this article. Even though many perceive working in tech as easy, it is not the case. Working in tech is far from easy, but you can make it easier. You will see how in the following paragraphs.
RUN YOUR OWN RACE 🏃♀️🏃♂️
It is easy to compare with other developers and become demoralized. Especially if you have an account on platforms like Twitter, Codepen, Dribble and so on. It seems like there are only developers better than you. But that is not the case. It is because you are following well-known developers.
Anyway, the moral of this is to run your race. It is perfectly fine to look up to other developers and get inspired, but do not compare with them. Comparison is the thief of joy.
Understand that there are always people better than you. But on the flip side, there are less experienced developers that look up to you too.
Don’t-know-it-all means to stop trying to learn and memorize everything. You are not a machine. You do not even need to learn and remember everything.
Google, Stackoverflow, Udemy, and so on, are there for a reason. Make good use of them. There is so much information that even a lifetime is not enough to memorize and learn everything.
Be a don’t-know-it-all that knows how to use the available resources to find answers to his/her questions.
MASTER OF EVERYTHING 😵
Do not try to become a master of everything. I know, it feels like every day, ten new shiny tools and framework are released, but you cannot learn them all. Let alone master them. Just because new tools and frameworks are released, it does not mean you have to learn them.
Pick a number of technologies you want to learn and stick with them regardless of what is being released. It is so easy to jump around and lose focus. By jumping from tool to tool, you will always be a novice.
But that does not mean you need to ignore newer technologies. For example, you should not overlook React or Vue and stick with jQuery. What it means is that if you know React, it does not mean you have to jump on Vue or vice-versa.
For instance, pick a stack and stick with it. Do you want to learn the MERN stack? Stick with it regardless of what is released every day. It is better to be good at a handful of technologies than average at 100 technologies.
WORKING WHEN NOT WORKING 🤯
This is my biggest issue and the one that puts the most pressure on myself. You might ask yourself what do I mean.
I mean taking work with you after finishing work. Usually, I finish work at 5 pm. The problem is that I keep thinking about what should I do, what should I learn, and so on. As a result, my mind is continuously in the sixth gear. Always working, never resting.
What I am trying to learn, and what you should learn too, is to switch off from work. Once the laptop lid is closed, my brain should switch off too. Resting is more important than people know or like to admit.
Learn to rest. I am learning too.
WE ARE ALL IMPOSTORS 🎉
Recently, I had a Q&A with Randall and Madison Kanna (link here – read it, it is awesome), and Randall talked about someone with impostor syndrome. That’s what she said:
One of the most senior engineers I knew who was a genius, had a CS degree, and had literally sold several startups told me that he had imposter syndrome constantly and it was a huge wakeup call for me. Now, I’m kinder to myself and realize that nobody knows it all.
That says it all. What can I add more? E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E has impostor syndrome.
SMALLER > BIGGER 💡
Break big tasks into smaller tasks. Do not set out to build the next Facebook straightaway. Instead, try to create a simple server, create routes, and so on. In no time, you will have an application up and running.
Completing these smaller tasks over time, you will be surprised to find out that you actually did a lot. Besides that, achieving smaller tasks do not seem like a huge mountain to climb and builds your confidence. You are more motivated to do your work.
Always try to break tasks into smaller pieces. You save time, build confidence and achieve things easier.
- Run your own race. Get inspired by better devs, but don’t compare with them.
- To teach is to learn twice. Are you good at something? Create tutorials; teach other people.
- It feels like every day ten new tools are released. Focus on some, and get good at them.
- Do not work when you are not working.
- Break big tasks into smaller, achievable tasks.
- We all have the impostor syndrome.