Life happened, I've been procrastinating for years!

Hey, guys. I’m a 34-year-old man, I’m currently jobless, haven’t had any formal employment since I graduated from college 10yrs ago. I studied IT in college and frankly I haven’t done any formal job related to my course apart from freelance gigs creating simple websites with WordPress. I’d say I have some basic knowledge with html and even less with CSS or any programming language. At the moment I cannot create a working program or any web app on my own yet I have a background in IT. I feel like my life has been a major failure when it comes to a career, I’ll be turning 35yrs next year and I have nothing to show for it in terms of career or life achievements. I joined freecodecamp in 2018 but I’ve been procrastinating in learning to code and have a career in web development. I want to start learning to code from tomorrow, turning on a new leaf in a new month. Anyone with ideas on how I can keep myself motivated and focused to achieve my goals will be highly appreciated. Especially how to break the habit of procrastination which I’ve come to accept is a problem for me. Also, duration and frequency on learning the concepts in the course. Thanks in advance.


Hey @okwembafrancis!

Welcome back to freeCodeCamp!

My main piece of advice for you is to just create small achievable goals for yourself. Part of the problem might be your trying to tackle to much to soon and then walking away from it. But if you set small goals and take one small step at a time then over time you will start to create your own projects and eventually be ready to start applying for jobs at some point.

I’m 29 years and started learning how to code 4 months ago. I try not to rush the process and just set small attainable goals for myself. Right now I am working on my first solo project outside of a class and there is a lot to do but I just try to break it up in small bite size pieces.

I would start from the beginning of the FCC curriculum even though you have experience with html and css. A lot of it will probably act as a refresher for you. Don’t feel like you have to complete all of the exercises in a couple of days. Instead write down that you are going to complete the first html section. Then tackle the css section. That is a healthier approach than just blowing through all of the exercises and then getting overwhelmed.

Also it is important to remember that even when you finish a certification that you won’t remember everything or become a master of html and css. But the goal is to understand how things work and with enough practice things will become easier.

When motivation starts to wane, which it will, you can always voice your concerns in the forum and there are plenty of people that will encourage you to keep going.

Lastly, when it comes to duration and frequency , I would suggest setting a minimum time for each day. It can be 2 hours, 4 hours, 1 hour or whatever works for your schedule. There is nothing wrong with doing both active and passive learning. (Passive learning would be watching freeCodeCamp videos and reading articles. )

Hope that helps!

Good luck!


Hey! I turned 28 years old this year. I’m a Paramedic and earlier this year, I suffered a back injury that I didn’t think was going to get to the point that it has. I have been off of work since the end of August due to increased pain. I’ve had multiple injections and physical therapy and I have started coming to the conclusion that my career is probably over. After about a month of trying to figure out what to do with my life, I decided to give FCC a shot and see how it goes. I’m only 5 days in and I’ve done a TON of notes on HTML/CSS Section and I am now working on the projects. I think I’m at the point where I was accomplished and now I’m back to nowhere and needing to start over. The thought of not being able to provide for my family the way I have previously has kept me going. Maybe you need to find something worth fighting for and the first step is fighting for yourself. I know it sounds cliche, but you’ve gotta make yourself happy and what you’re doing now isn’t making you happy. Find someone to do this with you perhaps and have a study partner where you both and motivate one another.


Surround (immerse) yourself with motivated people, even if it’s just watching people on YouTube. If someone isn’t helping you to get closer to your goals, then they aren’t even worth a second glance.

I’ll be turning 35yrs next year and I have nothing to show for it in terms of career or life achievements

Who exactly are you trying to impress? If you live by the standards of others, success will always be out of reach, and you will always be a failure. If you do anything, do it for your own satisfaction.

Anyone with ideas on how I can keep myself motivated and focused to achieve my goals will be highly appreciated

There’s no trick to motivation. If you want something, you will reach for it, and if you don’t want something, you will avoid it. If you don’t know why you’re doing something, you won’t have a reason to continue when times get hard. If you don’t yet know what you want, then explore. The answer won’t come to you by itself.

how to break the habit of procrastination which I’ve come to accept is a problem for me

Procrastination comes from anxiety, which comes from fear of the unknown. You procrastinate because you don’t know what to do next. The next step is obvious when you understand the problem by breaking it down into its most simple parts.

Consistency is always stronger than will power. You will achieve more doing a few small tasks every day than doing one large task once in a while. Break your problems down into bite sized bits of struggle.


link the studying to someting else, for example you could stream your progress through the curriculum

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Hey @okwembafrancis,

Welcome back to the site/forum. I thought I’d share my story to maybe help with your motivation and your coding journey.

I have been learning to code for just over a month now, it’s something I always considered but never made the plunge. In fact I first joined this website almost three years ago and like yourself other things got in the way and forgot about my learning.

For me my motivation has come from Covid-19. I’m 26 and a mechanical engineer by trade, with the working from home and the lockdowns, work has been a hit or miss some months. I’ve lost income this entire year too due to the lack of work and from a period of self isolating. So for me I made the choice that I needed a different career path in which I can easily work from home if need be!

Another motivation for me is my family, with this lost of income I am very much afraid of not being able to provide for them. I’m sure you can find some form of motivation in your own life, it could even be just trying to improve yourself!

I have to study in the evenings after work, I dedicate an hour or two each day to complete some form of task online. That can be working through the curriculum, watching programmers on youtube or working on projects on Github. I make it my goal to do this everyday and I sometimes use a timer, but that is what works for me!

My advice is to work through the curriculum at your own pace, identify your own goals and work towards them. This may sound very similar to @jwilkins.oboe but she pretty much hit the nail on the head!


In a similar situation here, except I’m 35 and with a useless non-STEM degree, and also been trying to teach myself to code since… ages ago. :sweat_smile: Right now I’m more than 75% through Angela Yu’s web dev bootcamp on Udemy and am using free code camp merely as a revision. I found that the key is to stop contemplating (the meaning of life) and “waiting for Godot” and just do it. Thank you for writing this bc knowing I’m not the only one in this situation gives me more courage and hope. Hope this reply does the same for you.


Thanks a lot for your advice


Thank you, appreciate it

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Thanks for the input

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Thanks, I appreciate it

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Thanks for the encouragement

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Hi , I feel kind of represented in your post

I´m 35 years old and I studied chemical engineering in colleged but I never worked in something related. So I feel that in some way It was a waste of time. I ´m working at the moment but I feel stuck at work, not motivated and thinking that every year I´m more dumb

So I started here a week ago with the objective of learning something new and maybe in the future It could help me to find a better job.

I don´t have specific advise about how create good habits and avoid procastination. Maybe you could read books about this topics, I read a few and always you can obtain some ideas. But later you have to do it, that´s the hard part!

I would like you to cheer you up, don´t give up and think that thanks to your past it would be easear for you to learn more and faster to code




Thanks for the input

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