✂️ Dealing With The Things That Hold You Back When Learning To Code

Cutting the ties that bind us…

✂️ Dealing With The Things That Hold You Back When Learning To Code

I’m not much of a gambler, but I would bet you any money that if you’re trying to learn how to code, you’ll face more difficulties beyond just finding the odd bug in your code.

Now some of these difficulties are obvious, such as feeling overwhelmed with the knowledge you have to learn, not having enough time to practise your coding, or feeling like you just don’t understand something.

All of these are very common, and as learners and ever-growing devs, we all have to face these things at some point.

In the beginning, you’re all excited and eager to learn, and that’s a good thing. The last thing you need is to get held back from the progress you want to make.

Dealing with the things that can hold you back from learning to code is an important part of the journey towards becoming a proficient programmer.

In this article, we’ll explore some of the not-so-obvious things that could hold you back and how you can cut those ties that bind you and stay on your path to achieving your programming destiny.

Let’s cut to the chase!

Progression is about letting go, not pushing

When learning anything new, especially when we’re passionate about it, we instinctively want to push ourselves harder and harder to get better. But the truth is, progression is about letting go of old habits and ways of thinking to create space for new and exciting things.

Think of it like a cluttered room. If you want to bring in new furniture and decorations, you can't just keep adding more and more stuff to the space. You have to declutter and let go of some things to create room for the new.

Similarly, when you're learning to code, you can't just keep adding new information and techniques to your brain without letting go of some of the old ones. It's important to regularly reassess your approach to coding and identify what is and isn't working for you.

For example, if you're struggling to understand a particular coding concept, instead of pushing harder and harder to make it stick, try taking a break and coming back to it with fresh eyes. This could mean doing something completely unrelated to coding for a while, like taking a walk or practising a different hobby. When you come back to the coding problem, you might find that you have a new perspective that makes the solution clearer.

Once you use this technique for a while, you’ll soon find yourself learning and retaining more information and progressing faster than if you force yourself to do too much too soon.

Avoid doing too much of the same thing

Have you ever felt like you're working really hard, but you're not making any progress in your coding skills? This feeling is often referred to as hitting a plateau, and it can be incredibly frustrating to the point where you come to a standstill.

The truth is, reaching a plateau is a natural part of the learning process. It's when you've mastered the basics and are ready to take on more advanced concepts, but you're not quite sure how to do it. This is where many people get stuck.

The problem is that what got you to this level of skill won't necessarily get you to the next level. In fact, what's keeping you from the next level is rarely more of the same things. You need to incorporate new and uncomfortable things into your learning process to progress and unlock your full potential.

Think of it like a workout routine. If you keep doing the same exercises over and over again, your body will eventually adapt and stop making progress. You need to switch things up and challenge your muscles in new ways to see results.

The same goes for learning how to code. If you keep doing the same tutorials and projects over and over again, you'll eventually hit a plateau. To break through to the next level, you need to challenge yourself with new coding concepts and techniques to keep moving forward.

Embracing the uncomfortable

Learning to code can be a challenging and sometimes uncomfortable experience. However, embracing the uncomfortable is essential if you want to make progress, build up your coding skills and not get held back.

When you push yourself outside of your comfort zone, you open yourself up to new experiences and opportunities. You'll learn new coding concepts and techniques that you might not have otherwise discovered. Plus, you'll build resilience and confidence in your abilities.

For example, let's say you've been comfortable coding on your own, working on small projects that you've been able to complete on your own. To push yourself outside of your comfort zone, you could try collaborating with others on a coding project. This might be uncomfortable at first, as you'll need to communicate with others and work as part of a team. However, it will expose you to new coding techniques, as well as different approaches to problem-solving. It will also help you build valuable teamwork and communication skills that can be applied to other areas of your life. By challenging yourself in this way, you'll become a more well-rounded and effective coder.

One of the biggest obstacles to embracing the uncomfortable (for me especially) is the fear of failure. It's easy to become discouraged when you encounter difficult coding concepts or make mistakes. However, it's important to remember that failure is not a reflection of your worth or intelligence. Instead, it's an opportunity to learn and grow.

The journey is the destination

Many people believe that becoming a successful programmer is the ultimate goal of learning to code. They think that once they land a job at a tech company or build their own successful app, they've "made it." However, this mindset can be problematic because it creates a narrow focus on a single end goal.

When you're focused solely on the destination, you may find yourself feeling disappointed or frustrated if you encounter roadblocks along the way or if you don't achieve your goals as quickly as you had hoped.

Besides, there are many things that can come next after learning to code, beyond just being a successful software developer.

The truth is, learning to code is a journey, not just a destination. The process of learning, growing, and improving your coding skills is something to be celebrated and enjoyed.

Each time you master a new concept or overcome a coding challenge, you've achieved a small victory that should be celebrated. Instead of just trying to get to the destination as quickly as possible, you should appreciate and find joy in each step of the journey.

Think of learning to code like hiking a mountain. The peak may be the ultimate goal, but the journey to get there is where you'll encounter beautiful scenery, overcome obstacles, and experience personal growth. The peak itself is just a momentary achievement, while the journey is what you'll remember and cherish.


In conclusion, there are many things that you’ll have to deal with that could hold you back when learning how to code, however, it is more than just a means to an end. It's a journey that requires pushing beyond our comfort zones, embracing discomfort and making mistakes, letting go of old habits and embracing new ones, and finding joy in the process of learning and growing.

The destination may be the initial goal, but the journey is the true reward. It's the challenges, the triumphs, and the new experiences that make the journey worthwhile.

So, as you continue to embark on your own journey of learning to code, and you encounter anything that could hold you back, remember to enjoy the ride, take risks, and keep pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone.

You are capable, and there’s nothing that can stand in your way unless you allow it to.

Stay strong!

From your fellow ever-growing dev,

Cherlock Code

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