Hello World

How I became a Selfmade Developer

This is the first post on my blog, I think there won't be a better time for introduction, so let me tell you my story of how I became a self-taught developer!

On the 11th November of 2016’ I made a promise to myself that I’ll change my life and become a software developer. Right after writing down those words I began research about best possible learning sources. I’ve looked through a few sites in my native language, but I had a feeling that the knowledge on those websites was outdated. I am not sure now if my concerns were correct, but I tend to look more critical on a website when it doesn’t have a modern look. So I decided to learn in English and began a new research for learning sources. I didn’t know where to start at first, but I knew I want to build websites and mobile applications. I started searching on this matter and found a few great free resources to learn the basics. The 2 most important at start were codecademy.com and freecodecamp.com. I learned the most of basics there and I recommend starting with codecademy first, because it has a little slower paced learning curve which can help to remember the basics better. Then I went through around 60% of Freecodecamp course and stopped, because I had a challenge to test coding skills in real world situation, which was creating a WordPress Ecommerce website for my wife. After a few months of working on this ecommerce website which was 95% done, the ecommerce idea failed so the website was never published.

That moment I really had to think through my idea of becoming a developer. This website was supposed to be main position in my future portfolio, which is necessary in getting your first job as a developer. I haven't given up and went back to learning JavaScript. The first thing I didwas - the 30 days of JavaScript challenge!It totally changed the way i write JavaScript. The course author - Wes Bos shows many features of ES6 syntax and all the cool stuff you can build with JavaScript and different Web API'S. This is when I really started getting it, so I recommend everyone going through this course. Next thing I did was going through the free Udemy courses I've found on a few Facebooks groups. (Those courses might not be free now, but you can find some Udemy coupons every now and then on the internet.) After getting into this course I found out about React and then went straight to another course from this young man and dived in. This is when I was hooked with React. I knew I will have to choose some framework to learn at some point when I'll start looking for a job, so this was it. The paradigm was so clean and structured that I immediately made that decision certain. I started building simple SPA (Single Page Application) similar to this coursestraight away. After I’ve built a few applications I created my CV and started to sending it out.

Little did I know that my programming skills aren’t that solid as I thought, because I went to a lots interviews which didn’t go well and I still was at my office job as a Specialist of Purchasing. By the end of June, after around 1 months of interviews I had a job interview which went quite well and after 2 days later I’ve got a job offer for a Junior Frontend Developer. I was happy about it, but not 100% happy, because the offer hasn’t been the offer that I wanted, because the money offered was lower than the money I made in my office job. I had thought about it very long what should I do and in the end I rejected the offer.

That was June and by the end of a year I had a few moments that I regretted that decision, but those words which I was saying to myself kept me going forward: „I haven’t been busting my ass learning after hours to get the job which will pay me lower than I earn now. I don’t only want to change my job, I also want to change my life and settling for lesser isn’t the way to go. I want to get what I want and I’ll work even harder to get it.”

After around 10 more interviews and half more year, by the end of November I’ve got a job offer as a React Native Developer that I’ve been waiting for. The offer was the one I wanted and was worth waiting for, because it was a remote job, which I thought I will get only with at least year of experience in the office. That was one of the happiest moments in my adult life, because I’ve reached my first long-term goal that I’ve ever set to myself. On that day I thought about the offer I’ve got half year before and said to myself „That was worth waiting, never settle for lesser again”. Getting a job I wanted was much more than just getting a job, I’ve learned a ton during that year!

  1. Set goals and work hard for what you want and you’ll get it!
  2. Don’t settle for lesser, aim for the goal you want and don’t let the smaller award to dim the bigger goal!
  3. Believe in yourself!

Enough of introduction, I hope I haven’t bored you. Thank you for reading this, now that you know my story I hope you’ll stay and learn with me more about React Native and self-teaching. More meaty subjects are coming, starting from next post! Hello World! Selfmade Developer