Feeling overwhelmed as a beginner?

Feeling overwhelmed as a beginner?
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Just started my journey a few weeks ago and am absolutely loving it.
All I can do is think about coding and wish I could do it every day!

I have however been feeling very overwhelmed and worry about even the tiniest detail and I hate that about myself.

Now I’m currently studying Python and am about to start the FCC courses and hopefully master HTML, CSS and Javascript (along with finishing the entire course of course) but just to get to this point, it was so hard for me. There are so many options out there and so many roads to take that I sometimes wonder if I’m taking the right one.

Should I do Front-end or Back-end? Should I start with C or Python? Is this book enough? Khan Academy, Codeacademy, Udemy, FCC or youtube? Do I need a certificate? How many projects do I need to put in my portfolio? What if by the time I finish the courses, the market will be so saturated that I won’t find any work? Freelance, remote or company? etc…

These are the kind of things that literally keep me up at night (a few nights ago I just could not fall asleep until 7am worrying about this stuff)

I know my drive is there as my dream has always been to work from anywhere and not have to go to an office. My hate for the 9-5 rat race (in my case, 9am to sometimes 10pm) is so strong, that I sometimes study 4-5 hours without even noticing just to get ahead faster. I even write specific dates for when I want to quit and leave my current office job and start coding.

But still, that little overwhelming bug still creeps up from time to time…

Did other people feel like this when you first started out or am I just weird?

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everyone feels overwhelmed as a beginner. i think its because most people never really learn the correct way to approach problem solving. other than understanding to coding language itself, it takes a good amount of patience and attention to detail that most people dont really exercise until they have to start solving coding problems.

if i only give one piece of advice it would be that the more you try to rush the longer it will take.

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Thank you very much for the advice!
I think I need to work a little more on patience and really try to understand instead of trying to rush through all the lessons.

You hit the nail on the head and I will definitely work on getting better habits
Thanks again!

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This so much explains where i found myself. I realized it takes longer to complete lessons if rushed through. It’s better to take it one step at a time.

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Oh man!! Feeling this right now. I think a big part of it is trying to prevent burnout. I have a defined schedule for the things I’m learning that took some time to nail down. Before that, I was just trying to cram it all in and feeling myself getting drained and overwhelmed quickly.

Stick with it and you will get there (I’m told). Apparently everyone goes through this in the beginning.

I listen to a podcast called codenewbie that helps too. It goes over developer’s personal stories of how they got into the industry and their advice to newbies. The first episode that was recommended to me was with Quincy Larson, the founder of this very site and that’s how I got introduced to freecodecamp. Check it out if you’re into audio mediums. It has encouraged me a lot.

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I am not on your path. I learned C some 25 years ago. I took another career path and find myself coming back to this one. If I knew what programming would be like 25 years ago I do not think that I would have gone where I went. This world of computer development is so much more fun than it was years ago.

My suggestion, don’t start with C. It is very low level, which sounds good because it forces you to learn some fundamentals which are usable in every language. However, it is really slow to produce anything in. Go learn another language first, then visit C. I think everyone should spend some time learning the concepts C forces you to learn, but don’t start with it.

Just a suggestion.

As for the rest of your post, It keeps me up at night also.

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I’m glad I’m not the only one and thanks for sharing your experience!
I’ll definitely continue to stick with it.

Thanks for the podcast recommendation. I’m not a big podcast guy but will give it a listen.

Happy coding!

Thanks for the suggestion! I have heard similar stories about C but once I get the hang of things and get better, I’ll take a look at C.

I’ve been learning to code for 3 years now off and on and I kept running into the same problem. What I finally learned was to stop looking at the whole and just focus on the smaller stuff. keep it simple. Don’t worry that you can’t create something as complicated as an os. Work on small projects. If you have a hard time remembering things don’t stress over it. Learn the very basics and experiment. You’ll eventually start doing more advance things. Good luck

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Hi there, I am also a complete beginner. This is probably the third time that I start learning front-end development all by myself.

What works for me is that I focus on the small achievements. First, let’s complete the FCC HTML path. Then, the challenges. Then I will ask for some feedback from peers. Stick to one thing, learn it well, move on to the next one.

One small step at a time gets me further than sitting around, worrying about how will I make it, feeling overwhelmed.

I am doing a Udemy class which I found very useful and doing it gave me a lot of confidence. To my learning style, video classes sometimes help more than reading dry documentation.

So I do the small steps and celebrate the small victories. I started telling my friends what I’m doing. I can already amaze them just by changing the background colour or the text of a live website (in the inspector :P) .

I also keep track of the time I spend on my studies, for reference. This way, I can say "well I have already spent 100 hours on … ". That’s another way to combat anxiety (for me).

And last but not least, I sometimes take photos or small videos when I manage to solve an issue I have been struggling with. This way, in a few weeks, I am able to look back and think “Wow, I have come a long way!”.

Anyway, I hope some of this might be useful to you too :slight_smile:

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Thank you very much for telling me your experience.
Yes, it is very useful and I will try to put these tips into play!

The “doing small achievements” tip is excellent and really hits close to home.
I think my goals up until now have been too big or vague and once I realize their not realistic, I would’ve quit for sure. But I will definitely try to be more realistic and set smaller goals for myself, and grind and hustle everyday.

Thanks to everyone too for all your stories and advice.

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Don’t worry and keep going.

To find out what you want to learn first, I’d watch some overviews of stacks:

After you decide which one is yours you can find or create a roadmap, which will tell you which to learn next. Something like this: https://github.com/adam-golab/react-developer-roadmap

P.S.: If you want to become a good developer you better learn patience - that’s the key skill for any programming activity.

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I think front-end development will get you more inspired. Back-end is more boring stuff. Starting with front-end forces you at some point look at back-end.

Or why not try Golang? Almost as fast as C and almost as easy as Python. If you decide to do back-end stuff.

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Code newbie is one of the most amazing podcasts i have ever listened to. Really fantastic!

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I also love the Code Newbie podcast! Check out their twitter @codenewbies for weekly discussions and check in chats :slight_smile:

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