You Are Not Dumb — You’re Learning

I really hope that people who are starting to learn programming (especially women) who have read some of my posts will feel encouraged that it’s okay to feel like you’re not getting it when you’re learning new programming concepts. If that’s you, please don’t feel discouraged!

You are not dumb.

This is an important lesson I actually learned while attending Skillcrush — It’s the computer that is dumb, not you! It has incredibly strict requirements for how you communicate with it. It has no ability to interpret or guess what you actually meant to say. If you miss a comma, or even a word — any human could figure out what you meant! But your computer cannot.

When your code doesn’t work, it’s likely because the computer doesn’t understand it, not because you’re not smart. Unfortunately, as programmers, we are beholden to computers, and we must learn to think like them in order to program well. This takes time and practice and memorization and a lot of patience.

I want more people to discover how awesome programming can be, because it has been incredibly empowering for me to push through the particularly difficult times in my own learning and get to the meat of it.

Keep at it, trust yourself, trust the process.

If you enjoy it, you will probably be good at it. Because the most important thing is to never stop learning, and to allow the curiosity and passion for the thing to overcome these insecurities.

Originally published at

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