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Tauri StClaire
Tauri StClaire

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From Front Desk to Front End p.9 My Motivation

This week I'd like to wax poetic about the things that keep me motivated and coding! πŸ’ͺ

I'm going to start off by talking about all the things that demotivate and bring me down πŸ˜‚ (trust me it'll make sense later):

So it's actually quite challenging to keep myself going! I have scoliosis and chronic pain as a result, poor sleep as a symptom, and a formidable scoop of anxiety to top off, esp regarding this very difficult process of breaking into tech as a late career changer. I do my best to manage all of this with exercise, a positive attitude, and daily destress activities with weekend time off from studies (but not from networking!) where I vent with friends. My positive attitude really keeps me going. But I think it's just impossible to keep working your day job while trying to learn new skills AND transition careers without feeling worn thin, no matter what. I've been really feeling that the past few weeks y'all.
I know myself well enough to know that I can keep showing up and doing what I can at this point, but that what I can do is less for right now. I've been taking care of myself extra, and I am being patient with myself until I can ride another genuine energy wave. Sometimes doing what you love means doing it tired, but I don't forget to also scale back otherwise I'll burnout which I've sworn off of, thank you.

Now, onto what MOTIVATES ME! ✨✨✨
I am extremely excited about front end development! And many of the related skills that Skillcrush teaches, including design and digital marketing. I think this skill set is incredibly valuable for me to become a citizen of the internet in the way that I wish: which has always been to have a website of my own, and to interact with social media with content that utilizes design and good writing for salience and impact.
A lot of my journey towards front end has been having to explore and educate myself on what the languages of front end development look like, feel like in use, and what they can achieve. I don't feel I was well informed on the power these languages enable ANYONE to access, and once that became clear to me I was hooked for life. I'm going to forever be software tinkering, in one way or another.
Some projects I hope to do as an SWE: I want a Wordpress blog with corresponding rad logo, a Python app for my D&D campaigns, and maybe my own recipe organization and meal prep app.

And my motivation to keep going on this career journey is my mom. She had me at sixteen and took care of me by herself. She is the strongest person I know, so hilarious, and sharp as a whip. She taught me about discipline and the value of an education as she encouraged me to be the first person in my family to get a bachelor's.
She bestowed upon me a love of books, of learning new things, and she seized opportunities to get me into free classes on speed reading. She showed me the book that helped her get her associate's degree with little baby me by her side: Ron Fry's How to Study program. I'm so grateful for her for teaching me how to study because I think I would have felt overwhelmed and out of my depth in school, and especially at University, without those skills. And now they allow me to be a good student in a self-paced online program.
She also taught me not to be afraid of switching careers, no matter how old you are, as she made several career shifts from legal secretary > real estate agent > owning her own Pilates studio for the past 15 years. She's amazing and I'm so blessed to have her support.

so much of what demotivates me can be coin-flipped into what keeps me going!

The compensation for SWEs is undeniable, and I know I will thrive in both my career and life satisfaction with a flexible remote job. That way I can:

  • self-care for my chronic shoulder and back pain with lots of arm rotations and bends
  • keep pushing towards things that freak me out, and thus remind me of what I care about the most (but with compensation and in an environment where I can self care through out, because good stress is still stress!).
  • self care with anti-inflammatory foods, which aren't cheap! Berries, fish, mountains of greens~ I also have only ever achieved pain relief when getting regular massages back when I did a trade with a friend, so that is a long term goal for sure... I take a liquid turmeric concentrate instead of Ibuprofin, which irritates my stomach very quickly, and the turmeric supp is fancy of course.

I may be more sensitive than the average bear, but I know that every human is going to need to be able to make accommodations for themselves at some point no matter what. I love
Accessibility is Not a Mystery by Laurel Younis from this years Codeland. I wish this ability for everyone.

Which leads me to my last source of motivation: I am also incredibly motivated for my partner of the past five years. She is so expansively compassionate and adds so much joy to my life. I have never wanted so much out of my life before meeting her. I was actually in a very low place for almost a decade before meeting her, and me at a low is still smiley and energetic so no one knew. I didn't even fully notice the difference, until I was with her and started to become Myself...
She is a disabled veteran, and such a hard worker, so we keep each other motivated thru our pain and motivated to work out so we can keep it managed.
We want to travel, take excellent care of the dogs and cats we wish to adopt, and wish to have every accommodation possible to take care of ourselves as we grow old together. For this, I am motivated to work hard for a company that sees my worth and pays me well in return.

So, to recap, a lot of good and intense things have caught up with me this week! My inflammation got p bad and this week ended with a doctor's trip to investigate my skin freaking out as a result (results are: all good). I'm not any less motivated, I'm just taking care of myself so I'll be ready to get back on the horse next week!

Wednesday 8/17/22

I finished setting up the car repair exercise so that the cars that need repairs are displayed in a neat list on the press of a button.
I debugged this cute reading list generator , the biggest catch being realizing that the loop at line 49 needs to be for...of in order to loop thru the array, not which goes thru keys and/or values but is not specific for arrays.
I tinkered with my FEM grid component project more and fixed the mobile widths, but will have to single the main component out before the layout is finalized. Tomorrow I start my introduction to APIs, the last lesson before cracking into the final big projects of the intro to JS fundamentals! I will def be studying and reviewing before starting those!
🌺 Destress Activity: Neighborhood walk with my love and read more material for our D&D campaign. We got custom minis from Hero Forge so I am muy excite!

Thursday 8/18/22

Learned about APIs today and took some simple notes on creating async functions! Took a quiz to reinforce my learning. I wound it up earlier than usual today to help my partner with some things.
🌺 _Destress Activity: _

Friday 8/19/22

I had to handle some personal biz today after work! 😎 (after a heavy nap πŸ’€)

Monday 8/22/22:

I did a little JS today. Here's a code snippet to oogle of me fetching an API for random images from the Lorem Picsum API:

Vanilla Javascript code for fetching a random image from an API and displaying with a button click
Displayed using CodeZen.

One of my Skillcrush friends Mary started sharing some code snippets on her LinkedIn, and I realized that was a spice I was missing! Give the people what they want! (more code! also, it's me, I am the people).

Then I did a gear switch to learn some concepts in digital marketing for this dream job which is BIG stretch. It's a communications job involving SWE with an excellent company which is my dream combo that I have set as a long term goal. Once again grateful that Skillcrush has such great resources, including a series in digital marketing with a class specifically focused on SEO and Social Media which was my topic of interest.
And grateful that my program is flexible. It's really fulfilling to be able to tailor this growth-focused experience towards my desires and in response to the unpredictable tides of life.
I may be taking a bit to work thru JS Fundamentals, but it feels good feeling like I am actually learning and absorbing each lesson. I may have done well in the University system with ten week long quarters per class, but I generally always came out wishing I had absorbed more. I actually going to take next week to review all of my exercise repos which may mean I will take longer in this class, but it will expedite my abilities with Javascript so well worth it.
🌺 Destress Activity: Went to get ice cream with my partner

Tuesday 8/23/22:

So I went to the doctor after work today to get a bobopsy ("biopsy" from my Big Fat Greek wedding), and thankfully I'm g2g but am apparently just very inflamed.
The entire doctor's trip had a lots of delays and took two hours.
So I started this exercise and fetched an API for random users, but that's all I got in me for now.
🌺 Destress Activity: Walk with my love

See you next week with an update on how the rest of this week went! I'll admit, I feel a lot more clear headed after getting cleared by the doctor..

Top comments (4)

mckennabramble profile image
McKenna Bramble

TAURI. I had not idea that you could transfer the code sandbox lessons to a github repository. Then I saw your reading list debug and I connected my github to my code sandbox account. OMG. Life changing. THANK YOU.

Also, thank you so much for speaking candidly about managing pain, stress, and anxiety while working a job AND learning tech skills. I agree that sometimes the thing to do is to show up tired, but at other times, it is important to accept that sometimes rest is needed more than productivity. For me, figuring out how to stay healthy and still productive is an ever-morphing balancing act.

I also love hearing about you and your partner ❣️

taurist profile image
Tauri StClaire

It's tricky to navigate between codesandbox and Github tho! I haven't figured out yet how I can add new branches to deploy a GH page from a CodeSandBox repo!

Thank you SO much for your encouragement, @mckennabramble ! I've been kinda dragging the past few weeks but starting to pick up steam again, and it helps so much to have your support. ☺️

jacobvarney profile image

Thanks for sharing Tauri! I'm glad that despite all the obstacles you have, you're powering through and continuing to keep your goals in sight and still taking care of yourself. Keep going strong! πŸ™Œ

taurist profile image
Tauri StClaire

Thank you so much, @jacobvarney ! πŸ™Œ