Questioning myself

I’m about halfway through the HTML-CSS lessons, just about to start the Tribute Page certification.

When instructions are given, I can now code them in correctly about 9 times out of 10 for first try. But for many of the things, I’m struggling to understand why am I doing the particular thing.

Is this normal at this stage? I know that things do get explained along the way, but I just can’t seem to remember most of their purpose…


Hello and welcome to the community :smiley:!
Congratulations on reaching out :tada:!
The more time you spend coding the better you’ll understand the concepts.
You can always read up on certain parts you find difficult to comprehend or turn to the community for help!
FCC has lots of articles on tons of different topics and MDN is great as well!
Hope this helps and happy coding!


You know that thing where to learn someone’s name you need to use it three times?

Think of the lessons as the first exposure. You don’t need to understand everything, it’s just the first time you are seeing it. Later when you are building a website you will have a problem and google what to do and you’ll see it again and use it, then the understanding will grow a bit.

Then maybe the 3rd time you will encounter it again and it will click. The way these things are designed sometimes you won’t grok why it was designed this way until after using it a lot.

Basically, don’t worry about it. The more you encounter a concept the better you will understand it organically. It’s not all going to happen the first time.


Absolutely normal! Understanding comes with experience. Keep coding, building projects, and gradually, the “whys” will become clearer. Persistence is key.


As a beginner I blew through the HTML Cat Project and the CSS Menu Project and was beginning the first certificate project when I realized I couldn’t remember anything. I was constantly going back to those projects to see if I was doing the certificate project correctly. Long story short I went to the store to buy a notebook so I can go back to those projects and take some notes. It’s slow but I think this will help me to better understand the concepts. Progress is progress. Persistent consistence is key. Good luck!

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I too, have this problem, butfreeCodeCamp says how something happens, not why so I recommend googling everything ‘what is a flexbox?’, 'What is the difference between an id and a class? etc. I think that I would prefer to do things differently as well, so for example, I think I’d like to work on one section of html and then sort the styling out in CSS, then the next html part and so on and do tweaks as it goes along etc. Also, I’m not sure if there are that many divs when you code professionally but flip! I have forgotten all the classes and ids. I think if I were to code, I’d put in SO MANY comments to remind myself what I’m looking at. I google every single question I have, I also use W3 to understand things.

I got into a rut of self-doubt and the thing that got me out of it was listening to the freeCodeCamp podcast. I learnt that no software engineer knows everything, they just know where to find the information when they need it. You’re not going to be an expert in code, you’re going to be an expert in researching code, forever.

Also, you’re human, this is hard to remember and it’s brand new, I know it looks like there isn’t anything for intermediate learning but what I would do is decide on a project and then start it, see where you’re struggling, look at StackOverflow, look at freeCodeCamp forum, look at W3, watch YouTube videos and doing it by yourself will really solidify why you do things, AND WRITE COMMENTS FOR EVERYTHING, rubber duck your learning too.

Happy coding, you’re supposed to be here, none of us are imposters!

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