Why Learning to Code Is Soooo Hard?

… and what you can do to make it easier

When we read stories about children learning to code it’s tempting to assume that coding is easy, but it’s not — it’s hard. You might be ten minutes or ten hours into your coding adventure, but eventually, it’ll come: the first seemingly insurmountable problem. We’ve all been there, and unfortunately for some, the frustration is too much, and they give up — never to code again.

How you learn to deal with these frustrations will define your coding career, because, at its most basic, coding is problem-solving. After that first problem, there’ll be another, and another after that. You never finish learning to code; there’s always another, harder, problem to solve somewhere in the distance.

So how can we overcome our frustration and keep moving forward? Here are three steps anyone can take to help overcome their coding frustration:

Step 1: Accept Frustration as Part of Learning

As adults, we are rarely tested with difficult problems. The frustration you feel when you hit a coding brick wall is unusual, and that makes it uncomfortable. To succeed, you must accept that these uncomfortable moments are part of the learning process.

Coding requires a certain way of thinking, and these frustrating scenarios force your brain to change how it thinks, helping you improve in the long-run. The process of struggling and then finding a solution is as important to your growth as learning the answer to the problem.

The ability to deal with and overcome this frustration, even to find enjoyment in it, is what separates successful programmers from those who fail to learn.

Step 2: Improve Your Problem Solving by Asking the Right Questions

What’s the first thing you do when you hit a tricky problem? If you’re like most people, you do a search on Google or look for an answer on community sites such as Stack Overflow, Quora, Reddit or SoloLearn.

You’ll probably find what you need online, but it can be easy to waste hours looking for the answer. This time would be better used trying to find the answer yourself and improving your problem-solving skills.

If you’ve tried everything and can’t find the answer, it is likely that one of your basic assumptions is wrong. By asking the right questions, you may be able to find the answer yourself:

· How did you expect your code to work? Why?

· Which part isn’t working as expected?

· What assumptions have you made about how your code works?

· Which of these assumptions is wrong?

If you don’t learn to try and solve problems yourself, you’ll always rely on outside sources — and you’ll be more frustrated every time a problem occurs.

Step 3: Engage with a Community

Coding can be lonely when you first start learning, especially when you start to get frustrated. Joining a community not only provides support, but it also allows you to see that everyone else gets stuck and frustrated too. Somehow, it’s not so bad when you realize everyone else gets stuck, and you’ll soon realize that some other coders get stuck on problems that you found easy.

One great way to learn is to find a fellow coder at your level and learn together. By bouncing problems and ideas off each other, you will benefit from their insights and views and learn to solve problems together. In a team environment, problems are less frustrating and more fun, because you’re in it together.

This is how we do it here in SoloLearn community with over 5 mln profiled learners. Would love to know how you deal with those moments of frustration.

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