Asking for help is not a weakness or a failure

Asking for help can be daunting in so many ways, the feeling of being a failure because you couldn't figure it out yourself or even thinking others will think you're not competent. We all want to figure things out on our own and the satisfaction of knowing that you did it, you figured it out all by yourself is great.

When things don't go to plan and you've tried your best, you've watched YouTube tutorials, read the official documentation, been on stack overflow but you just can't figure out what you have done wrong, imposter syndrome can really start to kick in. If you are sitting there feeling down, feeling that coding isn't for you and questioning your life choices... Remember this, you are not alone!

When you're working in the industry against tight deadlines, you don't always have the luxury of spending a month trying to figure something out alone, work needs to be delivered. You may have spent a day on it, maybe even a week, knowing when to put your hand up and say "okay, I have tried my best but I need help" is crucial. Someone else has done what you are trying to do before and they may of spent the same, if not more time trying to figure it out too and could explain it in 5 minutes.

Coding is HARD, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it. Asking for help when you've tried your best is not a weakness and does not mean you're a failure. Everyone has a time in life, whether it's coding, building something, crosswords, literally anything new, we come to challenges that we just can't seem to figure out. So we ask for help from someone more experienced. The likelihood is, this person also asked for help at some stage and now they are passing on that knowledge as will you in the future when someone new starting out runs into the same issue.

Coding is a very collaborative environment and helping each other and raising each other up is what helps everyone thrive. By explaining concepts to others, it helps you keep things fresh and it benefits the next person who just needed that extra piece of info to understand the problem. Sometimes even just listening in to others conversations and asking questions when you don't understand will excel your learning, you will pick up things up quicker and be able to move forward and build all the amazing apps you dream of!

Sometimes by writing the problem out to ask the question or just explaining it to someone really gets the brain going and quite often you actually find the answer to your own question 🦆. You just needed to step back and break it down! Finding the solution and being able to move on will raise the confidence levels back up, no matter how it was found.

Imposter SyndromeCollaborationHelp
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Written by Daisy McGirr

Software Engineer & Student Mentor


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