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Let's not beat around the bush here, nobody likes the job hunting process (or almost nobody, I'm not a Sith so I should stay away from absolutes). After 15 weeks of an intense software engineering bootcamp I am now master of my own schedule again. This is good, and to be honest, potentially bad.
The motivation to land my first software engineering role is extremely high; so is the anxiety regarding the pandemic and what that reality is doing to the job market. So what is a new S.E. in the market for his first role to do? Roll up his sleeves and focus only on the task in front of me. Or, more precisely, tasks in front of me.
- I have an online pressence to update to ensure it is all consistent and stating I am looking for my first role.
- I have a resume that needs to be retooled from my past as an IT Manager and Project Manager to Software Enineer noob with a lot of drive.
- There are project demos to record.
- A portfolio site to conceive and create as well as brainstorm future projects to work on to add to my portfolio.
- A dog to walk often.
- An apartment to keep livable.
- My personal health to maintain.
- A kiddo that needs her Dad.
- A social life (thank you Covid, jerk) for mental health.
It is a lot and I am not in any way saying that it is more than anyone else; but it is mine and there you go.
So what to do about all of this? First, keep a schedule. Wake up at the same time each day, go to bed at the same time each day. Make sure I have a group of friends and/or collegues that are willing to be my check and balance and I to be that for them. A close friend coined the term Accountabilibuddies; and I love it (thank you Dane Dawson).
For myself, this new blog series is going to be part of my routine. Each week I will post about my journey between coding bootcamp and landing my first job. This week is preparation. As the list above indicates, I have a lot of prep work to do: Resume, LinkedIn, etc.
Writing about myself is not easy. The mental wall I hit each time I try to come up with a different/better way of discussing my career up to now is a little daunting, just because it's hard doesn't mean it's impossible.
So far the most helpful and motivational things that has happened since graduation is a group of us from class have created a group on a site called habitica. It gamifies tasks and habits. Getting a digital pet for completing the things I need to get done in order to land a job is awesome - silly - but awesome.
Research, research, research. I don't know what I want my portfolio site to look like. I know the goals of the site, I know what the basic semantic structure of the site should be. Everything else, work in progress. So I scour the internet for other software engineer portfolio sites to get ideas. My favorite, so far, is the portfolio site for Brittnay Chiang. I don't yet have enough projects to showcase to make this type of site layout and flow work for me, but this is a good candidate for a version 2 or 3 down the road.
So I will continue to brainstorm. I use MindNode to capture my thoughts and brainstorm ideas; I'm visual in my thinking and a mindmap lends itself really nicely to my way of thinking through things. Here is the link, should you want to have a glance at my thoughts (it's not a scary as it seems, I tell myself).
So in addition to spinning up a portfolio site, I also need and want to work on new projects. I've put a few idea down and continue to add to a brainstorm map. I'm sharing that one as well because I really like the idea of everything I build out on my own time being completely Open Source and my personal work process being open and transparent too.
All right, I've written a lot, if you're down here you've read a lot. Thank you for thank <3
Cheers! and you'll catch me in my next post.