DEV Community

Andrew Behery
Andrew Behery

Posted on

Stop making these mistakes if you want to succeed

What programming languages should I learn?

Which frameworks are the best?

Udemy is having a sale, which courses should I get?

There's so many blogs and articles about programming that I feel like I'm drowning in things to read.

Stop it. Stop that right now.

Adam Smith had it right hundreds of years ago when he wrote in his Wealth of Nations that wealthy nations will tend to have a labor force that specializes. When people specialize, they can get really good at that one thing, which will make them in very high demand for the thing that they've spent their lives mastering.

This is why the specialized surgeon tends to earn more than the general practitioner physician. This is why top athletes focus their efforts on one sport. Even Michael Jordan, when he attempted to switch to baseball, went right back to basketball.

Have goals, turn goals into plans, and then put on your blinders.

There's a time to brainstorm, to think, and to compare options to one another.

Sure, decide if you want to learn python or Javascript. Figure out if you'll run Windows, Mac OS, or Linux. Check out that blog for a moment to see if it's worth subscribing to.

But once you've decided what you want to learn, or what you want to accomplish, you need to focus, and that means shutting out all the rest. Have a plan, or a curriculum of courses, books, whatever, and stick to it until it's done. Be slow when deciding to change your plans, don't just do it on a whim, don't just get swept up by marketing (sales on courses, or catchy headlines).

You don't need to read every article post, don't worry, you're not missing anything, and they're not going anywhere. Getting good at your craft and practicing the fundamentals is more important then the shiny new whatever-it-is that the blog is writing about.

You don't need to constantly be on x or y forum just to "check in", "see how others are doing", or "report your status/progress". You can if it's intentional for your own personal online social media presence, but intentional is the important bit.

TL;DR: This is a reminder to stop getting distracted, stop having FOMO for things that won't make you a better dev, and to get to it, and do the work you need to do.

Top comments (2)

theowlsden profile image
Shaquil Maria

Even Michael Jordan, when he attempted to switch to baseball, went right back to basketball.

You learn something new every day. πŸ˜€

Getting good at your craft and practicing the fundamentals.

This point. This is the point that a lot of beginners tend to overlook when first starting with development (myself included).

Good, short and straight to the point post. This one is the one that every beginner must read!