When Climbing Mountains

As a student of web development, i often run into errors or new technology that seems insurmountable. I sit in front of my computer, and with my mouth gaping open, witness the overwhelming mass of confusion that is laid before me. I have no idea where to begin, and all i can see is how big and impossible this looks.

This exact feeling is what keeps many beginner developers from continuing on. It does seem insurmountable and you know it is going to take a big chunk of time and energy to figure it out. Some thoughts that might go through ones head: Do i even need to figure this out? Maybe i’ll just skip this and move on to something else. Maybe i should try a different career.

Comparison

10 Reasons Why Climbing Mountains Can Enrich Your Life explains ways that climbing mountains can affect your life in positive ways. Ill be the first one to tell you that there’s no way i’m going to try climbing an actual mountain in my current physical state, but I am going to use quotes from this article in relation to programming.
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Breathing Room

I know it seems ridiculous to tell you to do something you already do instinctively. I also am a human who was born to breathe. However you might be surprised how much stopping and actually focusing on breathing can make things easier.

Break The Stride

Very often, in a job which requires much thought and much pressure, things can get very tense. You are being paid to come up with a solution. you are on the clock to troubleshoot this problem today. There is not time to stop and take a break, these clients need consoling, this issue needs to be wrapped up, etc.

But a “break” does not necessarily need to mean stopping what you are doing, leaving the room, taking a walk or getting refreshments. You can take an internal break in your body and mind. You can teach yourself to transcend above the stress and give your mind a small but needed rest in less than 5 minutes.
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Skill Shifting

As a person who has worked as a hardware/electronics technician for many years, I am often wondering what skills do i already have which will be useful in web development. I have worked many jobs in the last 25 years, and built up a pretty good skill set based on making mistakes and learning from them. I’m going to brainstorm a little bit here and see if i can’t find some common ground.

Comparison

in The 4 Most Important Skills for a Software Developer, Simple Programmer says the four skills of a good software developer are:

  1. Solving Problems
  2. Teaching Yourself
  3. Naming
  4. Dealing with People

Based on this list, it seems that the job of a programmer, language skills aside, are somewhat the same as that of a mechanic, or hardware technician who repairs objects.
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