"The unexamined life is not worth living." - Socrates
Self-reflection is one of the most important habits that you can develop as a software developer. When you reflect on your own work, you can identify your strengths and weaknesses, and you can work to improve your skills. Here are five tips for self-reflection:
- Take time to reflect on your own code.
When you're working on a project, take a few minutes to step back and reflect on your code. Ask yourself the following questions:
-What went well?
-What didn't go well?
-What could I have done better?
-What did I learn from this project?
- Ask for feedback from others.
One of the best ways to learn is to ask for feedback from others. Ask your mentors, friends, and colleagues to provide feedback on your code, your projects, and your skills.
- Use a code journal.
A code journal is a great way to track your progress as a software developer. It can help you to identify your strengths and weaknesses, and it can help you to track your progress over time.
- Use online resources.
There are a number of online resources that can help you to improve your skills as a software developer. For example, Codecademy offers free online courses that can help you learn new programming languages and technologies.
- Attend workshops and conferences.
Attending workshops and conferences can be a great way to learn new skills and to network with other developers. Workshops and conferences can be expensive, but many of them offer scholarships or discounts for students and members of the community.
AnitaB Org’s Grace Hopper Celebration, which connects women in tech, is an example of a great networking environment coupled with workshops designed to share unique, innovative ideas and perspectives from industry. They offer scholarships for students and almost all the companies that attend the celebration sponsor their developers to go, too. An attendee can expect a packed schedule ranging from face-to-face interactions with hiring managers, leaders in academia, entrepreneurs, and key speakers.
Be a lifelong learner
If you want to be a great software developer, you need to be a lifelong learner. That means setting aside time each day – or at least each week – to learn new things. Here are five habits that will help you become a better software developer:
- Read programming books and articles.
One of the best ways to learn is to read books and articles about programming. There are many great programming books and articles out there, and by reading them, you can learn new programming concepts and techniques.
- Watch video tutorials.
Another great way to learn is to watch video tutorials. There are many great video tutorials on YouTube and other video sites, and by watching them, you can learn new programming concepts and techniques.
- Participate in online forums and discussion groups.
Another great way to learn is to take part in online forums and discussion groups. There are many great online forums and discussion groups out there, and by participating in them, you can learn new programming concepts and techniques. Tech Twitter is a decent avenue for this. It’s important to be diligent in curating a diverse feed, as you can unintentionally create a personal echo-chamber if you’re careless with who you follow!
- Attend local meetups.
Attending software development meetups is a great way to learn new programming concepts and techniques. It’s a more casual setting than workshops and conferences but still has an objective. Usually, the meetup could be for socializing with like-minded people like in startup crawls or could be educational to discuss a topic or introduce a programming technique used in industry. Local gatherings may even be virtual. These are a great way to network with your local software developers.
- Read non-programming related books/media.
A lot of developers get stuck in a rut, reading and consuming only programming related content. While this is obviously a great way to improve your skills as a programmer, you can also become a better software developer by reading and consuming content that is non-programming related.
Some great examples of content that you can consume to help improve your software development skills include books on business and management, books on psychology and human behavior, and even podcasts and articles on topics such as design and user experience.
By reading and consuming content that is non-programming related, you will not only improve your overall knowledge as a software developer, but you will also learn new approaches and techniques that you can apply to your programming work. So, the next time you are looking for some new content to consume, try branching out and reading something that is non-programming related. You may be surprised by how much you learn!
Foster a growth mindset
Software development is a challenging and ever-changing field. It's important to always be learning and growing if you want to stay ahead of the curve. Here are 5 habits that will help you in fostering a growth mindset:
- Be open to learning.
It's important to always be learning and growing if you want to stay ahead of the curve. A growth mindset is essential for software developers, as the field is constantly evolving. Be open to learning new things and trying new things, even if you don't think you're good at them. It may surprise you how much you can learn and how much you can grow.
- Be curious.
Curiosity is key when it comes to learning and growing as a software developer. Be curious about new technologies, new programming languages, and new ways of solving problems. When you're curious, you're more likely to explore and learn new things.
- Be persistent.
It's important to be persistent when learning new things as a software developer. It may take time and effort to learn a new technology or programming language, but it's worth it in the end. Persevere through the challenges and keep learning.
- Be open to feedback.
Feedback is an important part of learning and growth as a software developer. Be open to feedback from your peers, your manager, and anyone else who has something to say about your work. Use feedback to learn and grow and to improve your skills.
- Be a problem solver.
As a software developer, you're often faced with difficult problems to solve. It's important to have a problem-solving mindset and be able to think outside the box. Be creative and resourceful when solving problems, and don't be afraid to ask for help when needed.
As a software developer, you're going to face failure. A lot. It's simply part of the process. But, if you can learn to embrace failure, you'll be a better developer for it. Here are five habits that will help you do just that:
- Don't be afraid to make mistakes.
The first step to embracing failure is to stop being afraid of it. Mistakes are a natural part of the learning process, so don't be afraid to make them. In fact, the more mistakes you make, the more you'll learn.
- Fail fast, and learn from your failures.
Once you've stopped being afraid of failure, start failing fast. Don't spend weeks or months on a project only to find out it's a failure. Fail early and learn from your mistakes.
- Take risks.
Don't be afraid to try new things, or to take risks. Sometimes the only way to learn is to take a chance and see what happens.
- Be open to learning from others.
One of the best ways to learn is to learn from others. Be open to learning from others, both inside and outside of your company. There are many blog posts reflecting on developers’ mistakes that are useful in order for you not to make the same mistakes.
- Be patient.
Learning to embrace failure takes time. Be patient and keep practicing these habits. The more you practice being kind to yourself in the face of failure, the better you'll become at embracing failure.
Develop a strong work ethic
As a software developer, you're constantly challenged to stay ahead of the curve and keep up with the latest technologies. This can be a daunting task, but it's important to remember that success doesn't come easy. It takes hard work and dedication.
If you want to become a better software developer, you need to develop a strong work ethic. Here are five habits that will help you achieve this goal:
- Make a commitment to learning.
Okay, yes this is redundant, but it’s worth repeating. In order to stay ahead of the curve, you need to be constantly learning. This means dedicating time every day to learning new things. Whether you're reading articles, watching tutorial videos, or practicing coding exercises, make sure you're always learning something new. 15 minutes of learning a day doesn’t sound like much, but over time, it adds up significantly.
- Set goals and deadlines.
One of the best ways to stay focused and motivated is to set goals and deadlines. When you have specific goals in mind, it's easier to stay on track and make progress. And when you have a deadline looming, you'll be more likely to push yourself to the finish line, but don’t procrastinate.
- Take care of your health.
It's important to take care of your health both physically and mentally. This means eating healthy foods, getting enough exercise, and taking time for yourself. When you're in good health, you'll be able to focus better and be more productive.
- Stay organized.
In order to be productive, it's important to stay organized. This means creating a system for tracking your work and keeping your files and folders organized. It could also mean creating a daily to-do list first thing in the morning and sticking to it throughout the day. Rinse and repeat.
- Persevere through setbacks.
No one is perfect, and you're going to make mistakes along the way. When this happens, don't give up. Persevere through the setbacks and learn from your mistakes. This is how you'll improve and become a better software developer.
These are the 5x5 habits that will help you become a better software developer. Ready to upgrade your career now that you’ve reflected and implemented the changes to super-charge your mindset? Check out new jobs at companies that don't use LeetCode in their interview process at: https://www.nowhiteboard.org