Anybody here have massive anxiety while doing the FCC curriculum?

I’m just wondering if anyone else dealt with it and how they got through it. The problem for me is the anxiety interferes with my ability to think and comprehend things. I just got up to the random quote machine project and I’m dreading it. I feel like every time I hit one of these harder challenges in FCC I’m overwhelmed by all the stuff I still need to learn. I feel like I’ve just been scraping by and if I’m going to make it any further I have to deal with this anxiety so I’m not so stressed all the time. Part of my problem is I think I put too high of a demand on myself for this stuff. Like I expect myself to write code that’s good despite barely having any experience doing this before. It’s just been really hard to commit myself because every time I sit down I get so stressed out and anxious.


I think you may be guilty of something that has given me a fair amount fo grief in the past. I find that I ofttimes (I’m working on it!) approach problems with a result-orientated viewpoint. What I mean by this is that I view a problem in its entirety and measure my success at any given attempt to work on it by the question if I finished the task or didn’t I.

For me, this is often a self-defeating approach. It is easy to get bogged down by the enormity of the task at hand. For me, when this happens I usually procrastinate (not recommended!). What has worked well, for me, is not to worry about completing whatever goal is at hand and just focus on spending time working on the problem. It is a lot easier to “succeed” at your goal this way. And since it feels good to succeed, you might just want to work on the problem even more. Almost any problem can be solved if you put enough time into it, so just focus on just putting the time in - you might just surprise yourself :wink:

TL;DR: Dont worry about the end goal and just focus on one thing at a time. You will find that you can get a lot accomplished if you stop worrying about results so much.

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Anxiety seems to be a major problem among tech workers. I’m not a doctor so I won’t give out specific recommendations that could interpreted as medical advice, but STRICTLY IMO anxiety for most is a physiological phenomenon. As in: whenever I look at the lifestyles of people I know who are affected by anxiety, I’m not surprised they have it.

“make a cheat sheet”

Man do I know that feeling. And I felt it all the way up to the intermediate algorithm section. I would end up taking a week between challenges because I either “wasn’t good enough to tackle it” or, I had let a few days pass and couldn’t remember why I had done, what I had already done. And when I was done, half the time I couldn’t explain why I did what I did.

Here is what fixed (mostly) that feeling for me. Somewhere in the middle of the intermediate algorithm section I started keeping a method journal. Its more of an encyclopedia. Every time I use a new method, I write down what that method does in a text file with an example of it, then I add the method name to a list of methods like a glossary. Now instead of googling a for an answer, I generally have an idea of which method to use and I only need to get its specs from my cheat sheet. I don’t get crazy with the method definitions, usually just a few lines. This has been a huge help for me.

So now, even when I am stuck on what feels like an impossible script, I am still gaining ground with my little cheat sheet. Before I started doing this, every single piece of code I wrote felt like the first bit, scary.


I have, but not so much with programming. 4 years of freelance work in a completely unrelated area trained me to handle that feeling of “Ohmygod they want me to do this stuff for money but I don’t know what I’m going to do ImsuchafraudWHYCANTIREMEMBERHOWOTBREATHE”. I found out that a major contributor to this anxiety is a lack of trust in oneself to solve whatever problems come your way rather than a lack of knowledge. The more projects you complete, the better it will get. @Aaronms and @P1xt’s suggestion to break the problem up will help you conquer your anxiety and, with practice, things will get better. Over time, the negative stress will turn to positive stress, and you’ll enjoy the challenges more.


That’s that’s pretty much me as well. Right down to the procrastination. Currently dealing with a fair bit of that. A lot of what you’ve said has been something I’m working on as well. Some days it feels like my mind is more likely to slip into that results oriented frame of thinking. It’s almost like a bad habit. But I think I’m going to make more of an effort not to fall into this trap of thinking. Thanks for the insight.

I know this is really obvious to some people, but for whatever reason my brain has never worked too well at organization and planning. I’m definitely going to work on breaking things up and taking them piece by piece. Really appreciate the help.

I like this idea. This reminds me of a course I’m currently taking about learning. Concepts and more abstract ideas are more easily remembered when we have our own familiar anchor to it. In this case writing out a description of the method in your own words helps build more neural connections in the brain surrounding the concept.

I think I read on here you were a composer? Is that what you’re referring to? If so it’s funny because I originally had aspirations to be a video game composer. But then I realized how competitive and niche it really was and I just thought maybe I should stick to my music on the side and find a way to support myself in some other means.

Anyway there’s a huge lack of trust in myself. Always has been, it’s been one of my biggest flaws. I’ve been trying to build myself up over the years and it’s gotten better.

Random quote machine is a project I wrote after studying FCC curriculum for about 6 months. This was before there were front end projects or any projects at all.

I wrote it in about 15 minutes from start to finish with no errors in syntax or logic. I shared it with a few campers and Quincey asked if we could include it in the curriculum in a new “projects” section. (naturally I said yes)

I’m nto telling you this to make you feel badly…I’m telling you this because I wrote it after months and months of studying, writing algorithms, learning jquery and CSS before there were any front end projects.

In other words there was no pressure, no expectation, no timeline from FCC of what I would be expected to do or when.

You’ll write it when you know how to write it. THere’s no real pressure here except what you place on yourself.

The order & pace of the FCC curriculum is completely arbitrary. There’s no timeline that you are “supposed” to finish it in. The hours suggested are also just an estimate and not really based in anyone going through the curriculum with any particular level of experience.

Random quote machine is:

  1. a single quote obtained by 1 of 2 methods
  • get a random quote from an array OR (easier)
  • fetch a random quote from an API (harder)
  1. a container on your HTML page to display the quote

  2. A button to do it over again.

You can do it and no one is timing you. You’ll do it when you’re ready to do it.