Is programming for me? I feel lost before 2020

Hi everybody! :slight_smile:

I first join FreeCodeCamp few years ago, but never finished the curriculum (stopped at Javascript)
As so many things in my life, I start something, but never end it. Too many ideas, too many abort projects.

As 2020 coming, I remembered that I want to become a developper, in addition to my job as a system administrator (I work with Linux, Windows, VMWare, Docker, Azure, etc.).
So I decided to go back to FCC, and I felt lost cause I don’t know where to start again. I know HTML and CSS, do I need to do the course again ?
Last time I quit, it was on Javascript. Said to myself that I couldn’t become a developer, cause it was too hard. Javascript, Frameworks, Node, Git. All that stuff seems to be really hard to learn.

Have you some advices? Is it good to have a mentor (Accordingly to internet, yes), and how to find one to help me threw my journey? How much hour do I need per day as coding?

I really want to dedicate 2020 to learn, and become a developer, but at this point, I feel completly lost. Is programming for me? Is the market still open for beginners?

Thanks in advance,


to get a certification you just need to complete the projects, everything else is optional, you can see how you fare in completing the Responsive Web Design Projects and the JavaScript Algorithms and Data Structure Projects
If you can do those, then you can progress with no issue with the other ones

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Sounds a good start! Thank you :slight_smile:

Nothing to lose by diving back in for a while :slight_smile:

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I can’t help but feel good knowing that a system admin is saying this is “really hard to learn”. I’m doing IT support level 2 and kept hitting the glass ceiling as far as getting my foot in the door with sys admin level 1 roles.

I’m in a rut with my IT career and motivation is a huge issue for me. Like me, just do what you can and don’t put too much pressure on yourself. This is truly a great set of skills to master which will allow you to use tools and learn software that’s independent of any vendors.

I think it’s worth it so don’t stop trying!

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Should I Start Over ?
For me, it was just left with few challenges to complete my javascript curriculum but i started all over after a very long period of total absence from FCC… I’m currently on Basic CSS challenges and i’m really enjoying it. Just as @geonz has said, there’s absolutely nothing to lose. Going back to solidify your base is actually worth the while (if your base is already solid – skimming through the basics of things once in a while, wouldn’t also hurt you).

Having Mentors
Having mentors is good, really good, as there are times where you’ll hit a road block and just need someone to help out (so many have actually quit, abstained from programming, because, they couldn’t overcome such road blocks), having mentors will be very helpful to face and overcome such obstacles.

Finding a mentor to help through my journey has actually been hard and very expensive for me too, so what i did was to look for friends (a member of your family could also help) who can actually access my performance by monitoring if i’m still devoted or not. If you become less devoted, you’ll definitely stop irrespective of you having a mentor or not

How many hours of code ?

In my very own opinion, i think a minimum of 2hours and maximum of 6hours is okay in a day. You shouldn’t beat yourself up, if you can’t attain 2hours or 6hours – it’s a gradual process. Appreciate every little effort you put in to improve yourself and stay devoted.


I know what it’s like to feel lost. I started FCC a few years ago but then left it alone for a couple years while I was at college. Due to several situations, I dropped out of college and am now trying to get into the software development field as a (mostly) self-taught developer. One of the first things I did was to go back through all of the HTML and CSS challenges (which I had already completed awhile ago). It was a good review and only took me a couple of days to redo all the checkpoints, although the final projects took a little longer.
Setting aside a certain amount of time every day to work on programming is better in the long run than throwing yourself into it and getting burnt out in a week, and reviewing old material is a good way to get in the habit of doing a little bit of work every day. Plus, earning the Responsive Web Design Certification gave me something more to show for the work i’ve done than just a handful of checkpoints.
I’d recommend that you go back through the HTML/CSS projects and get your first certification (if you don’t already have it). If problem-solving, analytical thinking, and determination (or stubbornness) are skills that you have, then you have what it takes to become a good developer if you’re willing to put the effort into it. It might all seem intimidating from where you are now, but choose a path, and just follow it step-by-step.
As far as mentors go, they can be incredibly helpful, but finding and obtaining a good mentor is challenging. I’d recommend going to a couple Meetups and looking for someone who is willing to mentor you. Even if you don’t find a mentor at those meetups, you can still find friends that are at a similar level as you are and they can encourage you and help you out when you get lost as long as you’re willing to do the same for them.
The market is not really open to “I just know HTML/CSS” beginners, but there are lots of learning resources out there that are beginner friendly, and if you’re willing to put the effort into it, you won’t be a beginner for long. There are lots of success stories about people like us that self-taught their way into the industry. It is possible. I’d recommend reading Brody Dingel’s article about his journey to getting a developer job, as well as any other success stories you can find.
2020 is a new decade. Write out some goals, figure out what you’ll need to do to meet those goals and go for it.


A lot of people get stuck at the Javascript part. I suggest not to get stuck completely by, for example try one hard chalenge and after that, skip to the next chapter and do some “easier” tasks. Next day you van come back and take one hard chalenge and after, some chalenges from the other chapter. Works for me, good luck!


Thank you all for you support and advices!

First, I’m gonna do the HTML/CSS projects, then going back to JavaScript curiculum, and try to finish it this time. It will be one of my 2020 goals! If I finish earlier in the year I’ll learn server side Javascript like Node.js (It’s actually unclear for me).

One programmig language I would like to learn too, but later, is Python. This language could help me a lot in my daily work as a System Administrator (Our job is evolving fast).

I want to dedicate this year, and this decade, to be better at many things in my life.
Programing is one of them, and I was a bit lost few days ago, so again, thank you for your support!


maybe this is the right year! it seems that FCC will release something python at some point during the year, if things go well (or there is always the following year…)

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You never know until you try. Maybe it wasn’t for you then but you already learned a lot so get started again. You also never know how your skills will play out in your life. It’s never a waste of time to learn.


i guess the best way to know if “its for you”, is are you having fun programming? I remember, from the first day off, i really really liked it. its like solving fun puzzles to me, and finding new ways to create stuff is like finding gems. also, this idea that i can do something different / more complex with my own life (instead of previous boring job) comes to me like “wow, i can do this, its freaking amazing! im gonna build all this cool stuff!!”. Taking this into account combined with the question “how many hours should i spend”, i think its like this: if its is for you, if you are having fun: i think you should spend as many hours as you (ur eye’s, ur family, ur kids, ur current job) can spare. why make 6 hours if you can make 10? some days i make zero, most days i make 7, some days i make 10. as long as its progress, its good!

how to stay motivated? keep moving forward
how do you keep moving forward? new stuff, not getting stuck
how to not get stuck? always have a buddy to ask help

HAVE A BUDDY…at least, thats whats been the most important thing for me. and it still is (2y on the job now).