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How Do You Keep Yourself Motivated? (Insights from all industries are welcome! )

Hello everyone!

Tech industry is ever changing, new tools/frameworks keep popping up.
For example, using React hooks in the React App has been gaining popularity since its release.
Another example is the new features of JavaScript (ES6/7/8/9 /10......)

Questions:
1. Given the overwhelming amount of resources available online, what's your learning strategies? (i.e. what's the most efficient way to learn new things?)

2. How do you keep yourself motivated ?

#lifelonglearner
#learning
#education
#selflearning
#motivated
#psychology
#coding
#technology
#career
#personaldevelopment
#webdevelopment
#reactdeveloper
#programming


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John’s Answer

Achieving our goals is seldom easy. It's why knowing how to stay motivated is so incredibly important when it comes to getting what we want in the long term. And in a world with more distractions than ever before — from non-stop web access to constant texting — it can be all the harder to stay focused and productive and not just give in to what's easier in the moment. Many people think money alone will be enough to motivate them, and whilst that may do so initially, it's very hard to sustain financial motivation if the work you are doing actually drags. If you do that type of work for long enough you will find that no amount of money is worth swapping parts of your life in activities that aren't aligned with who you are and what truly is your passion and mission in life. So first things first, be true to yourself when it comes to setting goals!

MAKE SURE THEY ARE YOUR GOALS
One of the biggest challenges in staying motivated and sticking to our goals is in making sure that the goals we have set our ones we really want to attain. Sometimes we set goals based on what we think we 'should' do. Or we base them on what other people say. Make sure you're going after something that you want and that makes you happy — it can make all the difference. According to a piece featured on Forbes about staying motivated, it's important to visualize the end result and what it will feel like when you've achieved your end goal. This means visualizing the sweat on your back, the feeling of relief, the utter excitement — this is what will fuel you on days when you don't feel like working.

YOU CAN'T DRINK THE OCEAN ALL AT ONCE
The same Forbes compilation piece recommended breaking your goals down into smaller, more task-oriented goals — and set target deadline for those tasks. It’s human to want results now. However, some worthwhile goals may require a great deal of effort and time to accomplish. Don’t let that deter you. By setting smaller goals, you can work on each step that will eventually add up to big results in the end. And don’t forget to reward yourself when you reach small milestones along the way. Knowing that there are little “treats” along the journey to your goal will keep you excited and motivated. If your focus begins to fade or you skid on a patch of discouragement, you may find it helpful to identify an accountability partner who will encourage you to stay the course. And, in instances where your partner is also striving toward an accomplishment, you’ll experience the magic of motivating each other toward success. Visualizing the end result, celebrating small victories along the way and drawing inspiration and encouragement from others are three powerful, easy-to-implement methods of staying motivated toward reaching your goals. So, go for it!

KNOW WHEN TO SHUT-IT–DOWN
How can you stay motivated when you eat, breathe, and sleep work? A burnout is inevitable, and that’s never good for motivation. When your workday is over, know when to turn off work mode. Head home and enjoy your favorite show with a glass of wine, meet up with a friend or family member, or work on your side hustle. Knowing when to check out from work will give you some time to recharge and be fresh for the next work day. Staying motivated is absolutely within your reach — it's often just about keeping your end goal in mind and breaking down the larger end result into manageable smaller steps. Remember — you can do it!

Hope this was Helpful CL

Thank you John for your detailed response! I really appreciate your time in typing out thoughtful answer like this! C L.

Your Welcome C L, It was my Pleasure. Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% of how you react to it. John Frick

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Kiran’s Answer

Hi Cindy - You're right! Technology creates enormous opportunities and new risks alike. All kind of routine jobs have been automated in the past few years, thanks to breakthrough in technologies like robotics, machine learning, 3-D printing and artificial intelligence. It’s an amazing thing to be living in this digital age and therefore as a Technology Consultant in Financial Services, I have to make sure those technologies are part of my DNA. In order to keep yourself motivated, you have to be a lifelong learner and embrace the change.

I would recommend picking up a topic and start with something as simple as reading about it for 15 mins daily or listening to a podcast. As you build your interest on that topic over time, you'll automatically spend more time on it and then also start applying what you learnt in real life.

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Wayne’s Answer

Hi Cindy! Success can depend on staying motivated and persevering despite periods of frustration or other challenges. Here are some tips that I use to keep me motivated.

Put your goals in writing. Be specific, use action verbs, have measurable outcomes, and specify completion dates.

Make a list of obstacles. Think of everything that might stand in your way and plan for how you will stay focused when these distractions and temptations to stray from your path arise.

List the benefits of achieving your goal. Think about why your goals are important and what you hope to gain by achieving them.

Set a Routine. It is important to make time for study as well as time for yourself. Set a routine that makes room for personal wellness and health in addition to the study time that allows you to reach your academic goals.

Re-evaluate the routine regularly. Your routine does not need to be seen as set in stone. At set points every few weeks, it can be useful to consider what has worked and what has not. Each of these moments can be an opportunity to reevaluate and make a fresh start, continually tweaking and refining the routine until it works well for your needs.

Break your goals into smaller steps. Set sub-goals and define exactly what you are going to do and when. Make sure each step is attainable.

Celebrate incremental successes – Celebrate the small achievements. While you do not want to sidetrack yourself completely, rewarding yourself with small breaks or enjoyable activities can help you feel positive and motivated to keep working. A few hours of Netflix works for me.

Have a backup plan. Leave some room for mistakes and have strategies in place to get you back on track if you fall short due to unforeseen circumstances or a temporary lapse in motivation.

Chart your progress. Whether with a high-tech online tracker or an old-fashioned fitness journal, seeing incremental improvements can boost your motivation and help you make important changes in order to be successful.

Workout In The Morning. I try to do at least 30 minutes of cardio, spin or circuit training as early as possible in the day. Most health and fitness professionals will tell you that the morning hours are the best time to work out. For most people, the morning hours are when motivation is at its highest. After a long day of work, your energy and motivation may be diminished, and it will be much more difficult to drag yourself into the gym. Exercise will get your blood flowing and give you a little boost of endorphins to stay motivated and focused get you through the day.

Enlist others for help. Find someone who has the same goal and hold each other accountable. If you know someone who has already achieved similar goals, ask them for insight on how to accomplish them.

Get support. In many cases, friends and family members can help you relax when you are feeling overwhelmed. Taking the time to update friends, family, mentor, managers and teachers on how you are doing and where you are having issues can open the door to good advice and increased motivation to keep trying.

Remember the big picture. It is sometimes easy to forget why you are doing what you are doing in the first place. Why are in college? Why are you working on this project? All of the work you are doing, whether big or small, is being done for a reason: To help you reach your goal of obtaining a certificate or degree or a promotion and taking life in the direction you want to go. It can be helpful to remind yourself of this when you are struggling with motivation and potential burnout.

I hope these tips, tricks, and scenarios will help you stay motivated in any situation.

Good luck!

Thank you Wayne for providing me with a list of steps I can take! C L.

You're very welcome Cindy. All the best! Wayne Archibald

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Sarah’s Answer

Great question! As a hiring manager in technology, I'm always looking for people who show an interest in learning and trying new things. So, you're already halfway there!

There are 2 sides to the coin on this one. As technologists, we have to stay up to date and relevant on new and emerging technologies, particularly ones that relate to applications we support. At the same time, it's important to find areas of technology that maybe don't relate to what we do everyday but still pique our interest. As humans, we're going to enjoy learning about things that interest us more than about topics that are forced upon us. Balance!

I also think it's important to find topics that you can use and apply broadly across applications. I recently started taking a class on Application Security since it's so vital in this day and age to stay up to date on security testing, processes and procedures. This is something I'm interested in and can be applied to all the applications I own.

Finally, don't forget to set aside time to learn more about topics that interest you outside of your chosen discipline! It's easy to get tunnel vision and forget there's a whole other world out there! For example, I am doing a lot of research and reading around the topic of self-promotion as it's typically something women struggle with and I want to do what I can to not only grow in this area myself but also encourage others. I'm also learning how to write and publish a novel!

The more we grow, the more well rounded we are and the more we can bring to our careers! Good luck!

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Shaiju’s Answer

Great question Cindy!

On your first question, I agree that there are too many things to focus/learn and it confuses all of us what/where to focus! That too in this digital world, where we are exposed to lots and lots of information/training!

I would suggest first to identify your core strengths (in academics/technology/problem solving/analytics etc.) and focus more on improving on your strengths - by practicing more, attending related training/conferences, brainstorm within your friends circle, do lots and lots of experimentation etc. If it's about software engineering, go deep into the programming fundamentals (irrespective of the language/technology you choose) and also build on your problem solving skills. The same time, also look at improving your soft skills - communication/presentation/listening skills etc.

On the second question, one way to keep motivated is to have a plan for yourself and keep a track on the progress. Have daily/weekly/monthly goals and I am sure you will be happy while reviewing your progress on a regular intervals. Self reflection on regular intervals is one of the best way to keep us focus and make progress on the goal. Have a SMART goal - Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound and get it reviewed/adjusted as you progress. Look for a mentor who can help reviewing your goal and share feedback on your progress.

As you said, tech industry is changing very fast and there is no end to learning. Be open to new challenges/learning, you can do it. All the very best Cindy!

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Trey’s Answer

Hi Cindy.

I have been in the Tech Industry now for 20 years - the greatest period of time working in one industry during my 30-some plus years out of college. I never even set out to work in the tech industry, but here I am. To be successful, I have found that you need to keep an open mind and avail yourself to new opportunities that are outside of your "comfort zone" if you are asked to pursue those. As most everyone else has said, keep pursuing learning opportunities, and, work on developing both your technical skills, and, "soft" skills. Both are equally important to one's success.

I remain motivated by focusing on the work that I am presently doing and not focusing on the "what if's". Build up enough skills during your career that you can draw upon if your career expectedly or unexpectedly takes a different turn. In this new Tech age, change is one thing that we know is a certainty - so, each one of us needs to be prepared for change and, to embrace it as an opportunity to learn and to grow.

I wish you the best in your career!

Thank you Trey for your kind words & great tips! C L.

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Krasti’s Answer

Hi Cindy,

To answer your first question, I think the right learning strategy can vary person to person because everyone has different learning behaviors. For me, I am a visual learner so I prefer to learn by watching videos rather than reading a text. I usually search videos on youtube if I am trying to learn about a specific topic and it helps. Find out what kind of learner you are and start from there.

Regarding your second question, I keep myself motivated by surrounding myself in an environment that promotes these type of learning. For instance, if I want to learn how to cook new recipes, I may follow some chefs or influencers who share their recipes on their social media, like instagram. With the help of social media, there are so many ways you can incorporate what you want to learn into your everyday personal life. If I see it on my personal pages, they keep me motivated and may provide some good tips that will help me along the way.

Thank you Krasti for sharing great tips! C L.

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Chris’s Answer

Hi Cindy!

I work in Financial Services where my income is heavily production-based. With that, it is important for me to have a daily focus on what drives me to excel in my role. For me, I have a family. My wife stays home with our 3 year old and we have a second child on the way. I have a commitment to myself to ensure I provide well for them. I also enjoy expensive vacations and restaurants. I accept the obligation to support my desired lifestyle.
The advice I will give you is to decide the lifestyle you want. Then use the image of that lifestyle to motivate you in you career and throughout life.

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Simi’s Answer

You stay the most motivated at anything you do when you feel and believe that you are making an impact, either for a person, or technology or society. Always think what you do impacts whom and how. this will be more than enough to make you keep doing what you do better. Also whatever you do must make you happy and morally satisfied. Never do wrong and always keep trying something new or unique. it might be the same job that you did yesterday but do it different today. Get your signature style to it and make it different...that will motivate you enough to get up dress up and show up . All the best.

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Melanie’s Answer

Ditto on everyone who said to keep learning. I have been doing my same role for a few different companies and each time, though the role itself hasn't changed, I continue to keep a learning mindset so I can continue to grow and evolve and get better and better at my role. There is so much out there to learn; learning new things and implementing in my role keeps me motivated. Hoping this nugget of advice helps you!

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Alisa’s Answer

I'd say stick with one resource that you like, for instance YouTube has good simple animated videos, skillshare and LinkedIn learning are good too. What I like about LinkedIn learning is it gives you interactive quizzes. I like to speak to motivational people or watch them online because it motivates me to strive higher too. Look also for apps which make learning simple and interactive, I've seen loads on play store for Java, they might be more fun and make your experience enjoyable and therefore you will be more inclined to learn.

Good luck! :)

Thank you Alisa! :)) C L.

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Sarah’s Answer

Great question! As a hiring manager in technology, I'm always looking for people who show an interest in learning and trying new things. So, you're already halfway there!

There are 2 sides to the coin on this one. As technologists, we have to stay up to date and relevant on new and emerging technologies, particularly ones that relate to applications we support. At the same time, it's important to find areas of technology that maybe don't relate to what we do everyday but still pique our interest. As humans, we're going to enjoy learning about things that interest us more than about topics that are forced upon us. Balance!

I also think it's important to find topics that you can use and apply broadly across applications. I recently started taking a class on Application Security since it's so vital in this day and age to stay up to date on security testing, processes and procedures. This is something I'm interested in and can be applied to all the applications I own.

Finally, don't forget to set aside time to learn more about topics that interest you outside of your chosen discipline! It's easy to get tunnel vision and forget there's a whole other world out there! For example, I am doing a lot of research and reading around the topic of self-promotion as it's typically something women struggle with and I want to do what I can to not only grow in this area myself but also encourage others. I'm also learning how to write and publish a novel!

The more we grow, the more well rounded we are and the more we can bring to our careers! Good luck!

Thank you Sarah! C L.

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Brendan’s Answer

I typically leverage LinkedIn Learning for most of my educational needs to keep up with the tech industry as well as Google for less formal education and self-learning. My company provides access to the LinkedIn Learning content for me, which is a great benefit.

In terms of keeping myself motivated, I find joy in making other's lives easier. I moved into a role in management to be able to make life easier for my development team by setting a consistent direction and creating a culture that embraces change / focuses on simplifying the process. My advice on motivation is to find your passion and focus on it. If you're motivated by making other's lives easier like me, then a focus on concepts like DevSecOps. Keeping up with the latest industry trends there will more than motivate you to change the way your company deploys applications.

I always have a "passion project" that is often above and beyond my job responsibilities. The passion project keeps me motivated.

Thank you Brendan! I also find joy & sense of achievement in making other's lives easier! C L.

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