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Jan Kosutnik
Jan Kosutnik

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My story: Learning to code and career change at 40

Hello, I am Jan.
Here is a little story that I would like to share with you all.

First, a little background.
I have been in completely different industry professionally for the past 19 years, I will be turning 40 in a few months. I have been a Sound Engineer / Sound Designer in the Broadcasting, working for various TV stations, radio stations etc.

I have studied Interactive Media Design, more specifically UX ( User Experience ) and I have been building Wordpress websites as my freelance business. Mainly I have been modifying Wordpress themes, as I am sure most of the Wordpress beginners do in the beginning of their career.

I became comfortable in doing that, but that was not something that I saw myself doing as a full time job, neither was being a Sound Engineer, to be honest.

I got tired of my old job, as I didn’t find it exciting anymore, so I have decided to make a career change and since I was always fascinated by software and I thought that solving problems is something that would definitely be challenging and exciting, I started doing tutorials, because that seemed like the logical first step.

But first I had to decide what I want to learn.

After some research and since the advices I have read all said to focus on one language, I was deciding between Ruby and JavaScript. Decided on Ruby and began my online tutorial course. I also applied to a few Front End jobs online, both local and remote positions.

And the interviews that I have landed, all pointed out, that in my area of residence, without JavaScript I had little to no chances of getting a job.

So I had to start learning JavaScript as a primary language. This is all great, I am really excited about JavaScript, because I know that there are many things that can be done with it and also it is a great starting point.

Now comes the confessional part of the story.

I have created an Instagram account, where I keep my followers updated on my progress and I also follow a lot of experienced and soon-to-be developers.
And I noticed that the entire community is full of positive vibes, encouragements and so on. But.
Is this all real? Are everyone overly excited while they are learning? I think no. Well, at least I am not. I am constantly doubting myself, thinking that it’s taking too long to make some progress, at least the kind one that would make me more positive.

Imposter Syndrome. That’s what it’s called. It’s real. Google it if you don’t know what it is, because I could write a full article just about that.

And if I have been updating my Instagram feed pretty regularly for the first few months, somewhere along the way, real life situations occurred and I had to take a break from learning and concentrate on solving them before I was able to continue.

And I couldn’t lose the feeling that I am not making any progress, that tutorials are only that, tutorials. I should build something that would make me proud, right?
Only that way am I going to be able to progress and face real life coding problems.

So that is the plan. To build something that I am passionate about. What that is I don’t know yet.
But it is a step forward. I hope.

So here is a little story about my journey and my struggles. And I have to say that I have been following this community for some time and I love the articles and the positive vibes.

Have a nice and cheerful day all.

Top comments (3)

aritdeveloper profile image
Arit Developer

Be encouraged brother - you are among family! We've all felt what you're feeling, and many Dev.To members have written about the ups and downs of transitioning to webdev. I wish you Great Fortune in your learning and transition :D

jankosutnik profile image
Jan Kosutnik

Thank You very much for kind words, thumbs up to you too for your career change journey.

jamiekaren profile image
Jamie Ferrugiaro

Create post Jan! It's great to see other people in the same boat as I am!