Starting over in life at 32

Hi guys!; I just made my account in this forum and I wanted to share my life choices with you to get a little extra motivation. Im a 32 year old lawyer from Argentina. I’ve been one since I was 23 and had an average career so far, with reasonable success. Nonetheless I’m exhausted with the carreer and really need something different for my future. So I’ve decided to start over in life and learn to code so i can eventually have a carreer in software development and ultimately be able to work remotely. I’d be really happy to hear some encouragement and overall your thoughts in the matter. Cheers!


Hi Kjeld!

I’m also in my 30s and trying this out for similar reasons - I figure adding a new skillset in coding can’t hurt as I explore a new career path. My career background is in healthcare and I can relate to being exhausted and wanting something new, especially flexibility to WFH.

As a lawyer, I’m sure you have a great understanding of logic and excellent attention to detail - which seem like key skills in learning to code!

I’m enjoying the Responsive Web Design module so far! Have you started with that one?

I enjoy puzzles and patterns, and so far that’s how I would describe it - if that makes sense.

My partner is a software engineer and is planning to do a couple of the advanced modules in Python on here. I’m trying not to ask him any questions when I get stuck - these forums are a huge help when stuck on a step!

One tip I’d give is to use Chrome as a browser. I was using Safari, and in the first project in Responsive Web Design I hit a step that would not work in Safari! I switched to Chrome and no more issues.

Good luck to you!



Hi!, Thank you for replying!, it’s conforting knowing that I’m not alone in this.

It seems you’re very intuitive, because I think you’re spot on regarding that the main advantages that my career has given me so far is a good understanding of logic and attention to detail. I would add that it gave me a robust tolerance to stress and hardship.

I do also enjoy very much puzzles, and the modules so far have been very entertaining so I think the same way in that regards.

You’re lucky to have a partner in the industry!; I’m relying in my best friend who is a senior developer to guide me a little bit, and hopefully receive guidance help and support in the forum too, since I’ve come to understand that noone gets too far alone.

I’m indeed using Chrome, but thanks for the suggestion!

Thanks again for the reply and good luck to you too! Cheers!

Hey friend, I’m in roughly the same boat, the the path there was a little rockier. I’m a college burn out who started in fine arts; I didn’t recognize the severe depression I was going through and was cut off from my support system so they weren’t able to check me.

After years of just spinning my wheels, trying to crawl back into a healthy mindspace, an online friend told me about this place and I decided to give it a shot. I’ve only been working at it for a few weeks, but the html course alone has made so many things about the internet suddenly make so much more sense.

I’m having some motivation problems. After years of not pushing myself towards anything really it’s hard to form new habits. I procrastinated most of this week as I got to the first certification project because after my big failure in college I’ve been terrified to try (and fail) since. I literally signed up for the forums minutes ago because I was thinking about seeing if I could get an online study group or something going with some other beginners, but your post title resonated with me hard.

You can do this, I can do this. I’m on the east coast of the US, so I don’t know how the time zones would sync, but would you be interested in that hypothetical study group?


HI @Kjeld !

Welcome to the forum!

I am career changer who went from being a professional musician to a full time software developer using freeCodeCamp. I started learning how to code at age 29 and landed a job at 30.

Here is my advice.

Focus on learning the fundamentals really well

I have seen a lot of people rush through courses and lessons because they want a job quickly. But you can’t rush through fundamentals.

Focus on building up a good foundation in the fundamentals. That will put in a great position when you start your first job and you are asked to learn more technologies. If you have that foundation you will be able to learn on the job and grow. Otherwise, you will struggle and probably be in danger of losing the job.

Fundamentals matter. Take your time learning well.

Build projects outside of a class

Once you have done a few fcc certifications, build your own projects.
Draw inspiration from your current career and think of web applications you wish you had that solved some sort of problem.
You can showcase those projects to potential employers and it will help you stand out in the sea of junior developers.

You will also learn more by building your own projects and advance more as a developer.

Build up a network and learn in public

The competition for junior developer jobs is tough.
But what helps immensely, is building out a network of fellow developers.

Focus on being active on twitter, discords, chats, etc and building real connections in this industry.

Then when it comes time to start looking for jobs, your community can help land interviews and recommend companies to apply to and companies to stay away from.

Also, focus on learning and building in public.
You can participate in things like twitter’s 100 days of code challenge and share projects you are working.
If you build up consistency, then you can start to create some engagement and you never know who might see your post.

Hope that helps and good luck!


I am also facing sort of similar situation as yours,
I’m 32 going 33, always takes interest on technology and wanted to give coding a try because I love spending time in front of the computer.

love the concept of able to work remotely too~

Hi jwilkins, thanks for the reply!, I think your advice is very solid and my plan is to do more or less what you suggest. I plan to build my portfolio around aplications that might be useful for lawyers, knowing all too well the struggles. Thanks again for taking the time to reply, I’ll keep your advice at hand!. Cheers!

Hi!, thanks for replying. It must be hard trying to get things done with depression. Actually, one of the reasons I’m changing careers it’s because I’m feeling that the burnout might be paving the way for depression and i want to steer the ship before that happens.

I hope that this forum helps us both to keep ourselves motivated. Thats mainly the reason why I made the post in the first place.

Regarding the study group, It’d be a cool idea!, My time zone is GMT -3 and I study every day from 5pm to 8pm. We could set up a discord group if you’d like. Cheers!

Hooray for those of us in early 30s! :grinning: I am just beginning too; I’ve done the first section of the Responsive Web Design and am still plugging away happily. Cheering you on!

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Definitely not alone, friend.

33(m) here and just started my journey into software development.

I began working with no-code tools and found that the logical approach that programmers use has helped me develop a core style of thinking about problems in my life, not just those on a screen.

I’m progressing through the JavaScript course now, and I hope I’m able to complete it.

The way I got here is entirely different from how you did, but I don’t think it’ll stop me from achieving my goals.

Freedom from addiction was my biggest hurdle; having accomplished that, I feel like relearning everything else is just the next logical step.

Hi friend!; Thanks for replying.

Good job on overcoming addiction. I guess it’s probably a very hard thing to do, since there’s a lot of people that seems to fail in their attempts. I’m sure if you were able to succeed in that, you’ll be able to nail this too. Good luck!!!


I can relate to a lot of what you’ve said (burnout, issues in college, mental health challenges, etc). I joined the site earlier this week and I’ve been moving through the Responsive Web Design cert at a good pace.

I’m worried about maintaining the momentum though and want to build a real routine so I’m more likely to succeed.

I understand what you mean about the first cert project - I completed mine (to the point of it being passable - though the content wasn’t great and only had minimal styling) but I couldn’t imagine submitting it because it didn’t feel ‘good enough’. I wanted to move on to the next challenge though. My partner, who’s a SWE, encouraged me to just submit it and move on - so I submitted it and will come back to it later to touch it up.

I tend to procrastinate like that when I think my work sucks based on some arbitrary standard in my head - definitely related to college experiences. I failed more than one course in college only because my final paper/project wasn’t perfect , and so I didn’t turn it in -_-

It’s ridiculous and something I’m trying to change about myself. I know I won’t be successful in learning to code if I continue to get stuck like that.


I’m also on the east coast in US and would be interested in a study group too.

I’m most active on here in the evening until late night/early morning (5PM - 2AM-ish).

I’m a night owl by default, but I’m open to working together during other hours.
I also have trouble forming new habits and have lots of unstructured free time at the moment.

Discord would be cool with me, too.


If a study group works out, I’d like to try having a virtual “body double” (as a group would be great) while working on projects, too. I’ve done this IRL for other tasks/work but not remotely/online yet. If anyone is interested, send me a message.

Hi! I’m another career changer, i studied journalism librarianship both at the same time, during that i also crash my mental health and as others colleagues I end in a depression with social anxiety, with that you cannot be journalist so I began to study code, first in java with books and tutorials but it was so difficult, then I found freecodecamp, currently i finished three courses and I’m practicing to pulish the essentials things after to start a few projects and aplying jobs and work in remote

You can do this, i promise you that Although it’s scary, it’s easier than the laws

Hi there!, Thanks for replying!.

It’s cool to see that other people are going through the same things. I’m trying to be strict with myself about the amount of time that I dedicate to studying. So far I’ve been very consistent, but I just started a few days ago.

Thanks for the encouragement!

Hey guys!, for the ones that shared the idea of creating a study group, i made a discord group that you can join if you follow this link: Mod Edit: DISCORD LINK REMOVED.

Hope to see you there some time soon, youre welcome to drop by just to say hello if you want.


I may join! I keep retyping things but yea - another career changer from biology. I’d left medical school years ago and felt like a failure but the recent ADHD diagnosis has given things a new perspective. I finished the responsive web design cert a bit ago and am close to starting the javascript projects and am in a bootcamp currently (generations).

hi there,

im interested in joining the discord group to motivate and assist each other!
but I’m located in south Asia GMT+8 and would usually be online studying after work around (10pm to 12am).

This is such great advice. Thank you. Once we complete the modules and the projects, do you have any suggestions for how we can “test” ourselves to gauge whether or not we know the fundamentals really well?

Working through coding exercises on exercism can be a good way to test your fundamental knowledge and problem solving skills.

But also working on your own projects and creating PR’s for open source issues can help with that as well.

The more that you code and build stuff outside of a class the more you will be tested to come up with solutions to problems and understand the gaps in your learning.

Thank you for the guidance!