James Bateson Personal Site: Post

Finding my thing

Do I have a place in the front-end development industry? That's a question that I've been asking myself a lot over the last few months. Am I good enough? Do I have the required skills? Are the things that excite me valuable in today's JS heavy stack.

JavaScript permalink

This has always been something that's planted doubts in my mind throughout my development career. It's such a huge part of building for the web (and beyond) these days, and the tools and results it can produce are FANTASTIC.

On a personal level, it's never really 'clicked' for me. I have a fairly solid understanding of the fundamentals, this is something I'm still working on improving. I can get around doing bits of presentational JS, however, I just don't feel that is enough now. The go-to on many projects now seems to be to reach for a popular framework such as Vue, React to name but a couple. These often seem to come coupled with the use of Typescript, have new ways/syntax for writing basic HTML and CSS in them. When still trying to get a solid grasp on the basics, it's just overwhelming what to learn.

I have started looking into previously mentioned frameworks, and whilst they are really cool, I'm just not excited by learning them. I feel like I should be, there are so many people using them, so much relies on them, I feel like I'm just so far behind in the modern JavaScript landscape.

Could/should I be doing more to get over this and learn them properly, maybe? But when other things excite me so much more, it's difficult.

Imposter Syndrome? permalink

Yes, this is absolutely something I'm dealing with at the moment, and one of the reasons I decided to write this post so candidly as I had the thoughts. It's tough to get out of this mindset, and I'm hoping by writing some positive things down and remind myself of the things I am passionate about, I can reflect on this post.

So what does excite me? permalink

Culture, HTML, CSS, UI development, performance, accessibility, design, UX, and animation.

When I type those out to myself, it gives me confidence that I do have a place in front-end development. These are the things that I am so passionate about and mean so much to me.

I'm lucky to have recently started a position at a company that has so many talented individuals (and always more on the way) that are also passionate about these things, and the communities and collaboration on offer to support learning and knowledge sharing in these areas is so so exciting and I'm loving being part of it and really feel I can thrive in the environment.

I think that JS is just such a huge part and requirement of modern front-end development, that I just can't shake the fact that I'm falling short in what's required of me.

Creating my niche permalink

Rather than keep digging myself into the mindset that I'm not good enough and that I don't know enough to be part of this disipline. I need to make myself valuable and an asset with the skills and passion I have.

How I'm going to go about this, I'm still in the process of thinking about. but jotting these thoughts down has given me a determination to make this happen.

I love what I do, and I don't want this to come across as having no drive or ambition, I have plenty of both. I love where I work and who I work with, and I need to fight to get myself where I want to be.