Zachary Lopez

Impostor Syndrome & Me

Impostor Syndrome is the idea that a person can’t understand or believe that they are good enough or qualified enough at a given task. Basically, they believe that they are “impostors” and are just fooling everyone through blind luck and timing.

For me this manifests as my current confidence level with coding. Computer programming is unique in that you don’t know a program you wrote works until it works.

Yes, you can measure and test things along the way, but you don’t know until you run the program and it does what you expect. In addition to this, there are just so many ways to do any given thing in code. I may code something up in a completely different way than you or someone else would.

My confidence with programming rises and falls and seems to change throughout the course of a day or project. Some times I feel like a progamming god that was born to solve problems. And then there are other times where I feel like I am the worst programer in the world and I shouldn’t be allowed near a computer.

It is hard to modulate this. With coding, you have to be confident that you will find the result.

This is compounded further because there is so much technology to use and learn. There are an infinite number of solutions that are already available. No person can reasonably know all of them.

As a programmer, you have to be able to quickly understand and be able to utilize and integrate someone else’s code. This leads to a process of constant learning that can and will shake your confidence.

My approach is to remember my victories in programming. Remember the days where I won, and I felt great. Believe that I can do it again, that I can solve this problem, right now.

I just have to believe in me.

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