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Maria Antonella ๐Ÿฆ‹
Maria Antonella ๐Ÿฆ‹

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Nobody talks about this in the IT world

This is not a post where I'm going to share with you some tips on how we can manage our anxiety in the programming world. There are no tricks, no tips, no secrets. I'm not going to tell you how to be the best programmer in the world. I'm not going to share any steps to learn a new programming language.

To be honest, at first, I wanted to write a post about how important it is to write and share our questions and doubts in forums like stackoverflow or github. This is going to be my next article ๐Ÿ™‚

I changed my mind because I found in my Notionโ€™s notes the following:

"I found myself thinking about this question: what am I going to learn the next few months, what about the rest of the year, what do I want to learn?"

This situation made me do some research on what kinds of things were out there, on the internet and booming, to learn. The thing is, everyone around me seems to know everything. Everything. Everyone knows about new frameworks, libraries, languages, improving skills, web3, data science... everything.

What about me? What do I know? It seems like I should know and learn about everything because, on the other hand, I'm a complete dumb person. _I feel like I'm nobody _(ha! damn impostor syndrome) It's a horror! Feeling that way.

Let's see, I've been working with react native and mobile app development for two years. I know that I know how to develop, about react native, about hooks, redux, firebase, push notifications, in app purchase, about analytics libraries, blah blah blah... Iโ€™m aware of that. But many times I think I don't know anything. It's exhausting.

Does it happen to you? I started to write this post one day when I was over anxious and feeling that I'm very small in such a big, egocentric and egoistic world as tech is.
And this goes beyond the company, the project, the team.

*Everyone talks about how great it's to work in the IT world. *

How much you can earn. But no one talks about the great tolerance you have to have to work in this area and the stress you suffer every day. I've cried because of the stress! (Please don't get to this point)

The only thing I can share from my point of view and that helped me feel better is:

Enjoying my free time.

I went on vacation. After two and a half years working non-stop. First big mistake.

Always take vacation days.

I started going for a walk after work, I started going to the gym for extra physical exercise, this helped me to clear my mind and sleep better at night.

I hang out with my friends during the week. So that the week is not so long and tedious. I spend time with family and enjoy it.

I also sometimes take short naps after work, and that's okay. Before i feel like unproductive because of that. But then I realized that it helps me to feel better.

I continue to go to my therapy sessions with my psychologist. I take care of my mental health. Please, if you can go to therapy, do it.

I know I'm missing a lot. Because I feel that way. Sometimes I feel like the stress is going to eat me up. But also, I have felt like I beat the stress, the frustration, the impostor syndrome. I'm beating fear. And I feel powerful about myself. ๐Ÿ™‚

I think that as I started to balance my life and my free time, I started to believe a little more in myself. And to understand that I know a lot of things, and that I still have a lot to know and learn. And that's okay. It doesn't mean I'm dumb or stupid.

But the most important thing: everyone handles it or tolerates it in different ways. Maybe, at this point, you know how to manage your anxious or maybe not. Maybe you feel like you can explode out of frustration (I'm sure you can deal with it, I can, you can, I believe in you and you should believe in yourself).

I would love to read how you deal with it, so that we all feel a little less alone and a little more accompanied.

Top comments (10)

joolsmcfly profile image
Julien Dephix

Hi Maria.

I've been developing for 20+ years and learn new things every day. And you know what? That's OK and a good thing!

We all learn at different stages in our lives. Not just code but general knowledge. One day you will come across an article about a history event you've never heard of before. Does that make you stupid? Of course not! You've just learned something!

Everyone knows about new frameworks, libraries, languages, improving skills, web3, data science...

Yes, some might know that much but a lot are prone to the Dunningโ€“Kruger effect. They have followed tutorials on CSS, some back end framework and read about Flutter and all of a sudden they're full stack developers.

Just keep on learning and enjoy the process.
Take time off, walk, have activities outside of coding and just take it easy (if you can :)).

antoomartini profile image
Maria Antonella ๐Ÿฆ‹

Enjoy the process! Yes, that's it.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts :)

antoomartini profile image
Maria Antonella ๐Ÿฆ‹

Sorry, it's too long. Too many words and feelings inside me haha

eljayadobe profile image
Eljay-Adobe • Edited

A long, long time ago I learned something that I found very helpful. It wasn't something that was easy to accept, and internalize. But once I did, and made peace with it, my anxiety levels went down dramatically.

The "secret" is: I don't know everything.

I also learned the corollary: No one knows everything.

And the realization that: I know some stuff, and you know some stuff, and you and I working together as a team are more capable than either of us working independently.

timexpeachtree profile image
Timex Peachtree

Thank you for article, been working In IT Field for 12+ years and coding for 14+ years, have used few languages over the years and have done coding and development on systems ranging from legacy 80's tech to modern console, web, desktop and mobile app development.
We can't know all that is there to know as new things keep coming up in our industry as it's one of only areas where industry is much ahead in breakthroughs and innovation than academia.

On a fun note I handle getting to know new stuff with bit of humor by subscribe to fireship๐Ÿ”ฅ Fireship Youtube it's pure gold ๐Ÿฅ‡ how Fireship Jeff can say anything and make it ๐Ÿ˜Ž.

yongchanghe profile image
Yongchang He

Love your cover image!

atulcodex profile image
๐Ÿšฉ Atul Prajapati ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ณ

Distractions are a lot we can just try to focus on a single goal ๐Ÿค˜๐Ÿšฉ keep it up ๐Ÿ‘

mmuller88 profile image
Martin Muller

Thanks for the talk. Yes speaking more about is would be great.

karanveersp profile image
Karanveer Singh • Edited

The better you get at something, the deeper your awareness of the craft becomes and you start to appreciate the profound beauty, and the art in the work.

Imposter syndrome is common then because your assumptions about your own preparedness for the work is being shattered.

Nothing can prepare you for the subtleties that lie at the heart of any craft. As you keep doing the work, you'll randomly feel your imagination stretch to new levels of comprehension, enveloping the design with all its details for a fleeting second. It is humbling, and yet terrifying - since it shows you a glimpse of the perfection you're unconsciously trying to grasp.

When this happens, it's a great sign of progress, and there's nothing else to do but to be grateful for the insight.

You become aware of truly how much work there is to achieve your vision, but having intuitive knowledge of that is also a hallmark of being skilled.
That's encouraging, even if it momentarily scares you.

So what if you don't know about web3 or Framework XYZ? You're skilled at learning, so rely on that to move forward.

Trust in your training, and welcome the lessons of experience!

tqbit profile image

The thing is, everyone around me seems to know everything.

Learning stuff takes time. I figured that the people you describe either have very shallow knowledge or fall into the same trap you so thoroughly describe. I think it's better to skip a few trends and stick with the basics. That'll get you further if you're in for the long run.

But many times I think I don't know anything. It's exhausting.

I've only recently joined the industry (coming from retail) and yes, I also find not knowing exhausting. But the feeling you finally get a grip on a topic by yourself-that's the stuff. When working on the shop floor (at least when I did), you learn jack. Your tasks are predefined and you do the same stuff every day, every week.

That's exhausting in its own way

I would love to read how you deal with it

Whenever I feel the way you do, it helps me remember how fortunate I am. I'm well aware there people I'll never catch up to. That's okay and no reason to be anxious. I like to have a guiding star. It helps me realise:

  • I'm not quite there yet
  • There's something to light my way while I enjoy the walk.