As a busy mother, finding the time to learn new things can be difficult. At times, it may even feel as though it is seemingly impossible. This feeling of impossibility is precisely why when you are learning something, it should be something worthwhile — for one reason or another. For example, it could be something you are interested in or something you feel could further your career and change your life.
Coding is something valuable that can help you establish a new career or chase your dreams of creating your own game or app. You can even start working from home since there are many job openings for remote-working coders. As a field with continually high demand, the chances are pretty high that you’ll be able to find work after your studies.
Aside from being valuable financially, learning to code can also teach you some practical life skills like critical thinking, creativity, problem-solving, and even patience.
If you are a mom currently learning or wanting to start learning how to code, these tips may help you along your journey!
Figure out your “why.”
Learning programming without awareness of why you are doing it might not get you very far. Coding can be challenging and frustrating, and knowing why you are learning it can help you get through the worst moments.
Are you doing it for a future career? Do you want to know it because you want to provide for your kids while working from home? Do you want to study how to code because it’s a passion you’ve always wanted to chase?
Take a moment to reflect, and do your best to keep that reason top of mind when struggling.
Find out if it’s really your calling.
Learning to code won’t always be easy, and you’ll have moments of incredible frustration. Sometimes you’ll be faced with jargon that can make your head spin or decisions like whether to learn object-oriented programming or functional programming.
At the very least, ask yourself if it’s for you and if you feel like you can see it through. You won’t honestly know until you try. Take a short intro course online in the language of your choice — you can try HTML, CSS, and/or Python as good starting points. Having some hands-on experience with it will help you better know if it’s something you want to have a career in or not.
Evaluate the costs.
Choosing to learn programming can be a huge investment. One of the most popular places to learn is college, which everyone knows can cost an arm and a leg. A less expensive alternative would be a coding boot camp, but unfortunately, some boot camps can cost over ten thousand dollars!
You can self-study by finding all the tutorials and materials online. Or, you could purchase a much more affordable course from learning platforms like Udemy. Doing this can save you thousands of potential debt, but it doesn’t reduce the amount of time you’ll end up having to invest.
Understand your options and know what learning to code will demand from you, so there are no surprises going in!
Set yourself up with breaks and ways to relieve stress.
As you attend classes or work on some of your projects, you may face stress and frustration. Stepping away from everything for a moment can help you come back feeling fresh and good to go. Make sure that you take frequent breaks, have scheduled days off, and save time for yourself.
When committing to learning to code, it’s essential to expect the unexpected. Some things can be easy, and others can be crazy difficult. Your kids can miss you or need you back home instantly. Technology can change in a snap and make you have to relearn something entirely.
Being flexible can help you adjust easily and help you manage your mental health as you go.
Establish your childcare situation and have a support system.
Not worrying about your children’s safety as you study can bring you peace of mind. If you’re learning how to code in person, having your child care settled can take a load off your shoulders. Additionally, having a support system can help take the burden off now and then.
Consider your future career.
This moment might still be far off, but it may help you consider what you want to do when you start looking for work. As a mom, you’ll likely want something flexible. But do you want to work part time or full-time? Do you want to work from home? Or do you, perhaps, wish to establish your own business? Thinking about this early can help you start planning for your future.
Learning to code and finding work in the field can be fulfilling and help you do what you need to support yourself and your kids. However, coding can be challenging even for the veterans of the field. Understanding how challenging it can be can allow you to manage things better, leading you to success.