Always A Beginner
There have been many a famous martial artist who have wished to be burried in their white belts. They knew they would be beginners in their new relm. In fact, I have known some martial artists who would wear their white belts even after recently earning their black belts. The point is, you never run out of something to learn, so never let your cup be too full of knowledge. Always stay curious.
Somewhere along the line in the last year, I began to feel like I was an expert. I magically closed the gap between novice or journeyman and master craftsman. I had some ego going. I wasn’t aware of thinking I was smarter than I was. I only became aware of it when I flubbed four consecutive attempts at the same apparently simple problem.
I just feel there’s a lesson for me here. Something like: Stop comparing myself to how I was when I started. I’m not sure if that’s it, but I figured that since I know a lot more than I did when I started, I am a whole lot smarter than New Guy was a year ago. So I must be pretty smart now, right?
I was in a sophomore philosophy class once where the professor told the story of a conversation he had with his 6-yr-old son:
Son: Hey Dad, I think I know everything!
Dad: Why’s that, Sweetheart.
Son: Because I can’t think of anything I don’t know!
In other words, we cannot see our own blind spots.
My 1 year of experience may not be all that great yet.
Okay, I’m starting to get depressed here, but this is important.
Employers have to decide who to hire among lots of qualified developers. That’s probably a crapshoot. They take their best shot.
But I don’t have to shoot craps. I don’t really need to know where I stand relative to all other JS developers. I just need to know what I know and learn what I need to know. I just need a Beginner’s Mind. Every day. Of my life.