This is a guest post from Akira Brand. Enjoy.
Dear New Developer,
Be a mentor.
Seriously. Find someone a little bit behind you in their journey and mentor them. All you need is an hour a week. Heck, even an hour a month. Work through exercises and projects with them. Tutor them in an Udemy class. Sign up to mentor hackathon participants. Find a code school you like and mentor their students.
You may not think you know a lot right now, but you’ll solidify what you do know in profound ways through mentoring. You’ll find every gap in your own learning that you didn’t know was there, and what’s more, be able to fill it. You’ll start to deeply understand the context behind certain problems, as well as the grander architectural and design systems that underlie all good software.
You’ll learn why things you didn’t care for or regard as important before actually are (for me it was pseudocoding), how to problem solve in a team, and build empathy for not only the end users, but for your mentee, and, for yourself.
Be a mentor. Find someone who needs a teacher and be that life changing person for them. It’ll be one of the most fulfilling segments of your career.
Good luck, and remember to breathe!