Things I’ve learned in the first year of my career as a web developer

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It me!

Its been over a year now since I worked as a professional web developer. Time really flies, I don’t code for some freelance thesis development or a random person pinging me in messenger at 2 AM for his business anymore. I learned a lot so far, had some sleepless nights debugging my messed up codes, won the most valuable person award in the company twice, taught study abroad students and a lot more. And by the way, I’m a web developer in Sun-Asterisk Philippines. It’s been the craziest year of my life so far. And I think It’s better to share to you guys what I learned so far.

Be Hungry for Knowledge

You don’t want to work for money. I know there are bills to pay and things that we want to buy that’s why we work. But the point here is, be passionate about your work, may it be in web development, digital arts, or I think this also applies to all types of industries. When you give your best effort to your stuff, things just get easier and you attract success in some way. Some people say that you need to have the talent and hard work to be the best, but I say it will just take a passionate guy to take it to the top.

And personally, I think learning is a non-ending process, especially for the web development industry. There is a javascript framework being uploaded to the cloud every day and I am not just talking about javascript. In general, there are new technologies that popping out. So as we, as web developers, we really need to catch up to the technology that we are playing around. You don’t need to know everything though. So go out there and do something you really love.

Expand your network

This is one of the advantages of extroverts, people who love to talk. They say, “No man is an island”, and I think it’s true. You really need to connect with people, talk to them, and share ideas. In the IT industry, there’s no Mark Zuckerberg in facebook without Eduardo Saverin, no Elon Musk in Paypal without Peter Tiel, no Steve Jobs in Apple without Steve Wozniak. These guys just started something from their dad’s garage and college room apartment which changed our lives today. You really need to start something with someone to make it work. Having friends in the same work industry also pays off. You can share ideas based on the different expertise you have, company cultures, and of course freelance jobs. So what are you doing with your friends?

We are not robots that can work all day every day. Even network servers need to restart from time to time, right? You can go to a beach, or hike your way up to the mountains. Explore new places, cultures, and meet new people.

Learn something different

Writing codes for 12 hours a day is exhausting. I used to do this before and it really destroyed how my mind works. You may finish all your short term goals but you’re shutting down your brain’s long term power. Try something new, maybe start to paint, or write down your thoughts about something. Our brain is divided into two halves, so why not try to maximize the potential of it? If you’re tired of all coding work, try to rest and do some creative stuff. This will help you learn something and possibly excel to it. It’s a simple life hack I found and it works for me.

Travel every once in a while

I’m sure everyone will agree with me on this. Everyone wants to travel but we neither have the time nor money. You only live once, so make the most out of it. We are not robots that can work all day every day. Even network servers need to restart from time to time, right? You can go to a beach, or hike your way up to the mountains. Explore new places, cultures, and meet new people. Travelling is not just going to new places and meeting new people, it’s keeping your mental state active and ready for another round of work. Reset your mind. Let it listen to the sound of the ocean, let it experience the gazing stars in an empty night sky sometimes.

Teach and Be Teachable

After I graduated from college, I created this long term goal for myself before I went into the tech industry. First, I’ll try to study and learn more about web development while I work; Second, I’ll apply that knowledge in creating new applications and innovate something that could change the world; and lastly, share my knowledge to people who want to learn web development. But I think I skipped my second goal. Currently, I am a Bootcamp instructor of a Ruby-on-Rails course. Basically, I teach programming to Japanese study abroad students. And as a mentor, it feels really good to see your students excel in programming and getting freelance programming jobs from the things that you taught them. It very rewarding, it makes me want to do more.

But yeah, everyone needs to start somewhere. So if you know something, try to share it to someone that might need your help. There are a lot of ways to do it, you can start in your office or maybe join a facebook group and share something that might help others. You were also a beginner before and you needed help, now it’s your time to payback.

Written by

Web Developer and an aspiring writer

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