How to keep up with learning and practicing if material just "evaporates"?

Brief history:
I never coded before, I sign up on freecodecamp in Nov '21, but really started learning to code in May '22. (before that, from late '20 I spent a year on THM platform playing with cyber security. )
Coding was great, hard and motivational.
Just as I finished legacy RWD (projects not finished, maybe one), new RWD was out (June '22?). So, I finished that too, from the beginning, repeating everything. It was great, less hard as it was fresh and I just keep on pushing. I was active on this forum too, asked for help, replied to help others.
I invested in book Head First HTML/CSS. Never regretted. I continued on building foundations and confidence.
In June '22 I finished portfolio
I was preparing myself for JavaScript. Like going in big leagues. I knew it will be hard. And it was. Still is!
I stuck on JS Record Collection lesson, so I switch to other platforms like scrimba, CodeCademy, YT etc. I continued to push and learn. At least one hour a day (I have full time job so sometimes is less, but more often is 2+ hours).

Six mounts passed, many basic JS topics covered/practiced and I realized that I can’t implement almost anything without guidance! HTML/CSS almost evaporated, JS in some brain fog and me looking in VScode screen thinking ‘-what’s next? how?’
Every video I see, or code, I recognize content and wonder ‘-how I didn’t come to that idea?’ Imposter syndrome?

I am completely aware that this is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. But I feel like I need to learn how to lace a running shoes. Again and again. :confused:
I know it will take me couple more years to get some confident to apply for job. I’m not afraid of interviews and rejections (quite experience there), those are my least worries. I’m worried how to keep content that I practiced and asking here for some guidance. Did I move too fast? How you did after approx 7-8 hundred hours of head into coding? Any suggestions?

It’s not that I didn’t learn anything, I did, but somehow, not in depth the content that I should. I installed ssd and created dual boot on pc, switched to linux and newer went back. I created github profile, uploaded everything trough CLI. I learned to concentrate and focus. Doing more physical activity to keep my brain and body working flawlessly. Reduced alcohol and junk intake. Lots of bits around the coding journey got better, but my code…not satisfied there.

Thank you for reading, any constructive feedback is welcome!

b

This might seem like a lot of “quotes”, but I wanted to provide evidence to what I think the current situation is.

Your stuck in tutorial hell. The proof is in what you have done, which is primarily tutorials, or books, or challenges. The only “way out” is actually to jump deeper into projects to apply what you’ve “learned” from other sources.

The issue with primarily relying on tutorials, books, and challenges is that they give you direction. This is great if your just starting and don’t know which direction is up or down, but if you only rely on them, you never get a sense of direction yourself.

The only way to get this direction is to take a step back and go without any direct guidance. This means building something from scratch with only high level directions. I’d compare it to learning to ride a bike without training wheels. Odds are you will fall over a few times, but you will get it after a while.

This of course doesn’t mean you try to build the next Facebook, rather you take a small step in learning a given area. So for example if you built a portfolio, you probably know some HTML/CSS, but could include some JavaScript that uses some of what you learned, and maybe a little more. Same way you wouldn’t take off training wheels from your bike and immediately go mountain bike riding.

I’d start building things based on what you feel like you know. Don’t start another course, just pick something you might/should know and start building something that includes a little of stuff you don’t know. From there learn how to debug what your stuck on, and the general “soft knowledge” that isn’t directly taught during a lesson, or course, or video.

The issue with tutorials/guides/lessons is that they teach a very specific topic in a safe focused environment. Building stuff is the opposite, where there are no guard-rails with unlimited potential to learn, and also to fail. Its here you’ll learn how to determine what the problem is and how to get help.

You could spend a few hours watching a video and learn a lot less than spending those hours trying to build something and getting it to half work. Try something and run into 500 different issues means you learn 500 new things!

Good luck, keep building, keep learning :+1:

2 Likes

This is very constructive answer, exactly what I needed.
I noticed that I rely too much on YT without trying first on my own. I keep saying ‘-just to help myself with this little part.’ Also, very dev keep saying that cannot remember everything and need to look up things on internet. So, I thought I’m doing the same, just little help from the internet.
I will keep in mind your post and turn to things I can do myself.
Thank you for your time

1 Like

Six mounts passed, many basic JS topics covered/practiced and I realized that I can’t implement almost anything without guidance ! HTML/CSS almost evaporated, JS in some brain fog and me looking in VScode screen thinking ‘-what’s next? how?’

I was in similar situation in 2021 and below helped me

  1. Re-learn HTML and CSS ( FCC, YT Crash courses etc )
  2. Build projects from Frontend Mentor
  3. Re-learn JS ( FCC, YT Crash courses etc )
  4. Do small challenges from Exercism
  5. Build projects from Frontend Mentor

While doing above do follow Pomodoro Technique and Flash Cards.

Try to find study / accountability partner/s to make sure you’re on path along with the team.

All the very best in your journey

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Aside from working on your own projects like bradtaniguchi stated- which you’ll definitely grow exponentially from -by learning from mistakes. When something is hard and you figure it out on your own without tutorial it has a deeper impact on your memory. If there’s a lot of information for you to remember from a specific language you can keep a handy note near you to jot important things for each coding language. Just read over those simple notes every night and after you’ll see you don’t really need it anymore, because coding is not memorizing it’s a skill, google is always available. :wink:

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Thank you all very much for your input.
I’m changing my practicing method and will see in future how will roll out.