Well, it was a personal best. Last night I did 10 waypoints, the most I had ever done in one night. I usually stop when frustration sets in, because, well I have other things I actually *have* to do and this isn’t one of them. Tonight I managed to get through even more: 12!!! This tells me one thing–the waypoints are getting easier, not because I know more though. They’re just easier to figure out, not as tricky as before. Or maybe the explanations are better. I am now at waypoint 71 and I will pick it back up tomorrow. I have done a good job of doing some coding every day, before midnight.
I read this great article from the Viking Code School Blog that really put things in perspective and lets me know how the learning cycle typically is for this sort of thing. The name of it is a little off-putting: Why Learning to Code is So Damn Hard. But he wrote it on my birthday, so it was obviously meant for me.
Erik Trautman lists four phases:
1. The Hand Holding Honeymoon
2. The Cliff of Confusion
3. The Desert of Despair
4. The Upswing of Awesome
(They even mention Quincy Larson, the creator of FreeCodeCamp.com (the program I am primarily working with), and his struggle when learning to code.)
One part particularly resonated with me:
Focus and avoid distractions because, if you’re the kind of person who’s interested in learning to code, you’re also the kind of person who gets interested by learning all kinds of other awesome things. When coding gets difficult, you need to be able to push forward instead of just trying out the next cool-looking thing.
I am so easily distracted by the “next cool-looking thing”. I want to learn ALL THE THINGS(!!!!!) but I cannot learn them all at once.
This is a great post for someone who is just starting out so that when you (we) reach the Cliff of Confusion you (we) don’t throw in the towel.