I'm a fairly young J2EE developer (23 yrs old), just out of college so I'm still very much in a "learning" mode. I've been feeling very overwhelmed lately and I thought here would be a good place to post to see if anyone here has had similar experiences.
During the course of learning Java/J2EE, and working on little side projects to help you learn, do you / have you ever been overwhelmed with managing your time between writing code (which you enjoy) and doing other things as part of a healthy and "normal" life? I'm having that dilemma right now. I still live with my family at home (haven't moved out just yet), so I don't have all the responsibilities yet of someone with their own place. But I still sometmies get very overwhelmed and/or depressed, feeling like I neglect everything else by working on this stuff.
On the other hand, I don't want to stop altogether because I do enjoy it, like a hobby. But sometimes things don't get done because I spend so much time doing this! :-)
If anyone has experienced this in the past, do you have any advice you could offer to a budding young developer?
Thanks so much..
Yes it's a question I asked myself many times some years ago. I think you should go on for now, and 'write code' while you're enjoying it. It's seems a little sacrifice on beginning of your life but the thing is that :
- one day you will not enjoy it at all
- this day, after some years of experience, it will be obvious and possible for you to change your job for something that will let you more time to have a "healthy and normal life".
It's true that it's very difficult, maybe impossible, to be efficient in new technologies AND to have a real life. But I think the balance from one to the other is a natural evolution of a career in computer science like in many domains...
I feel the same as you many times but I kept going through the J2EE-specs many late nights while my friends were out partying but coding is just so great. I'm 22 years old and spend a lot of time doing J2EE projects besides my studies, most of them payed but some just for fun and for learning. I'd certainly recommend you keep on coding and try to get some work in the Java-area were you'd learn stuff from the senior programmers while earing some money.
I don't think it's about being an expert in J2EE when you're as young as we are, it's about learning to learn fast. If you know Swedish, Danish is a peice of cake and if you know EJB's you could use JDO in notime. Try to learn the abstract parts and the important general stuff and not all the API's and I'll think you'll get a better grasp of J2EE and not feeling so overwhelmed.
Anyhow, you're so young compared to most people that know J2EE so you're probably light-years ahead your buddies who know "some C" so don't forget the beers and the beach. :-)