It is often the first foray into ‘real coding’ which can set you up for learning and understand more ‘server side’ languages such as PHP and python.
The first time you encounter loops, variables and functions is a minefield. It is scary and overwhelming and after the warm fuzzy blanket of HTML and CSS, it basically feels like you’ve been hit by a tonne of bricks. Your brain has to work ten times harder, just to keep up with the most basic task.
The first learning hurdle is a bloody big one. Luckily, once you realise that these functions, methods and objects crop up again and again in many other coding languages, you begin to understand how they work and how important they are. They show up in jQuery, Bootstrap, PHP, Python etc. just with slightly different names or syntax. So whilst it feels overwhelming to start with, by the time you’ve worked your way through a couple of other languages it becomes second nature. I mean, it’s still difficult because I’m new and still learning, but it no longer makes me want to curl into a ball of despair. So that’s a positive!
Hitting a learning and motivation slump.
I have even managed to nail down quite a large skill set in a short space of time. The problem is, I have no mark of what is good enough. I can’t live this way forever and at some point, will have to start earning, hopefully with web development (at worst with a part time job- so I also see I’m pretty lucky in that respect). I’m not entirely sure if I have hit a slump because I don’t know which direction to take or because it’s simply new and overwhelming.
Dealing with the doubt.
I could bullsh*t my way through an interview, or freelance job proposal in order to set up my earnings. The problem is, I’m far too honest. I’ve no issue with others taking the ‘fake it till you make it’ approach. It clearly works for many. I just couldn’t take on a job without being 100% confident that I have the skills it requires (or at least be able to work it out). Maybe its imposter syndrome, or maybe I’m just not ready. Either way that leaves me stuck between a rock and a hard place.
Do I embellish the truth a little? In order to start booking small freelance jobs, and take the risk of not being able to do the work (with no one to fall back on and an impact on future reputation). Or do I continue to study – without earning- until I feel confident that I can deliver. But there is no guarantee that will ever happen.
I am mainly thinking out loud here, and I’m sure I will work it out eventually. The thing with code is you can continue learning forever. Literally, there is no ‘endpoint’ as new updates and languages are constantly being created. The dilemma is knowing at which point I am considered worthy of hiring. So I guess that’s my next challenge.
Have I managed to achieve this week’s goals?
- learn how to make websites interactive and responsive
- look into creating printable summaries on canva – then actually do it
- start building my portfolio
I’ve completed the course sections and built the interactive ‘reaction testers game which involved generating different sized and coloured, circles and squares appearing at random. You test how quickly you can click on them and the game then gives you a response time in seconds. Super basic but actually very satisfying to build.
Canva and I currently have a love-hate relationship. I think I need to learn a little more (so I can produce something concise and useful) and get myself ahead with posts for this blog before I take on even more tasks. I have so many ideas but I don’t have the time to execute them all, whilst learning to code and maintain a website. I’m going to focus on fewer things but do them well.
I still haven’t started building a portfolio. Apparently, I am hell bent on sabotaging myself, I will tackle this!
Goals for jQuery
- Start my portfolio – finally, once and for all…
- Learn more about how to set websites up on the hosting/server-side.
If you are currently trying to learn new coding languages and are discovering the very real struggle, don’t give up! It gets easier the more you practice. If you ever need any words of encouragement, you can always send me a tweet @lucylouminous or even a Facebook message and I will try my best to help!