The Top 3 Tricks to Become a Persistent Coder

Do you keep procrastinating on learning to code? Learn how to fix your problem in this article!

I remember vividly the lectures of one of the most popular computer science professors at my University. He used to spend half of his time motivating us to learn his topic (web services) — pulling every lever he can lay his hands on such as money, contribution, anecdotes, and fun. If it motivated us, he was using it.

As a result, students were not only motivated to go to the lectures, they learned the technical details thoroughly, too.

The key to effective learning is long-term motivation.

Let me share with you a motivational case study of one of my most active Finxter users Csiszer:

“In one of your previous e-mails you asked us about our goals, dreams…

In brief: I’ve started to learn to code in 2017. I have had some health issues and I felt that I have to do something in order to keep my mind busy […]

One of my friends suggested me to learn Python. And I’ve found your Finxter site. Your awesome puzzles helped me a lot to understand different concepts in programming.

Last week I took an entrance exam and I was accepted for a post-graduate programming training at Cluj Napoca Babes-Bolyai University. That’s what I’m going to do in the next one and a half year 🙂

It seems that I’ve found a path… I’m really curious to find out if I can compete with it. I haven’t used mathematics for 20 years 🙂 and I’m a bit afraid. It’ll start this Saturday.”

Csiszer keeps pushing to learn Python for a few months now. He has made enormous progress since starting out.

If you are a loyal reader of my “Coffee Break Python” email series, you know how much I value persistence. If you keep pushing long enough, there are not many obstacles you cannot overcome. The fact that this may sound clishee doesn’t make it less True.

The key is to push long enough.

So here are my top three tips that ensure you keep pushing long enough:

1) Do Practical Code Projects

This ensures that you see results in the real world. If you take action, things are going to happen. And there’s nothing as addictive as real-world feedback.

2) Formulate a Clear Python Goal

“A 2015 study by psychologist Gail Matthews showed when people wrote down their goals, they were 33% more successful in achieving them than those who formulated outcomes in their heads.” [1]

For example, clearly define your target Elo rating level on the Finxter app. There are many other ways to set goals in the Python space. The key is to be specific and WRITE THEM DOWN. Seriously, before you read on, write your coding goals down NOW. You’ll immediately increase your chances of achiving them without any additional costs of time or money.

3) Use the Power of Habits

I recommend a simple habit with a low barrier to weave coding into your daily life: “Write a single line of code every day!”

You will soon realize that if you write a single line of code, you’ll also write a second and a third line. The low psychological barrier of writing a single line of code will ensure that there is no excuse of NOT making progress every day. The constant positive reinforcement and continuous improvement will compound your learning progress over the months.


So what’s the secret for unlimited coding productivity?

Write at least a single line of code every day on a practical code project with real-world impact. Write down a clear goal of your learning progress.

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