Why you still suck at programming after so long, and what to do about it.
2 min read
So you've been programming for a few months or maybe years. You get excited at every new release of a language or framework. You watch tons and tons of tutorials. You read countless lines of documentation. You buy every new course that is published.
Except....you're still almost as bad as you were several years ago.
You've tried everything, but you can't seem to understand why your abilities never seem to match up to the market standard. It begins to affect your mind. You feel inferior. You want to give up entirely and become maybe a taxi driver or something.
But hang on! This really isn't about you. It's got nothing to do with you as a person.
I too was stuck in this viscious cycle for really long. That's why I think I'm qualified to talk about this.
Most likely, the problem you have is the same one I had.
In my opinion, the BIGGEST growth killer in this profession is the desire for perfection. You compare yourself to others way too much. You write code, but quickly abandon it when you see someone else do the very same thing in a seemingly better way (or with fewer lines of code).
But you need to realize that code doesn't need to be perfect. At least, not on your first attempt. We all write code and vehemently deny writing such terrible code after a couple of years. My point is - you need to allow yourself to progress.
Beautiful, optimized and efficient code is a journey, not a destination. You need to allow yourself to fail in order to enjoy this journey.
This has been a very short article, but all I want you to remember is this: there isn't just one way of doing something. There isn't "that one perfect approach" to solving a problem with code. Often, there are many different ways. And the more time you spend fantasizing over whether your code is perfect or not, the huger the chunk of time you will waste!
As a beginner, or intermediate programmer, DO NOT worry about perfection. When you can stand on your own two feet confidently, then you can begin to worry about those fine details.
I wish I had heard these words from the beginning of my journey. They would have saved me the trauma of thinking I simply wasn't good enough.
Now, I commit such knowledge into your bosom. Happy coding!