How to Survive the Challenge of a Programming Boot Camp

How to Survive the Challenge of a Programming Boot Camp

How to Survive the Challenge of a Programming Boot Camp. Due to the high stress environment of coding bootcamps, with long working hours and difficult problem sets, it's no surprise why students feel burnout.

I was incredibly frustrated as I walked out of the school door that day. We had learned document handling in Java and, for some reason, I just couldn’t wrap my head around it. I couldn’t complete one single exercise and the whole day felt like a sign from the universe telling me to quit. I couldn’t handle feeling stupid anymore.

If I wanted to keep up with my class, I needed to spend the evening studying. Except, I couldn’t because I had a friend visiting. As I finished the boot camp that day, I went to meet her. We had a glass of wine while I vented my frustration. Then we went to the thermal bath here in Budapest and enjoyed the hot springs for two hours. In the end, all my stress was gone. The next day I still didn’t know anything about document handling but I was ready to keep going.

This happened in 2018. That summer, I had decided to put 10 years of work in journalism behind me and enrolled in a programming boot camp. It was one of the most challenging experiences of my life, but also one of the most rewarding ones. Now I work in IT, I’m happy at my job, and I can clearly see that all the hardship was worth it.

It’s easy to have this perspective in hindsight, but while you are going through it, a programming boot camp can be a soul-sucking experience and leave you drained and on the verge of quitting. To overcome this, you can make small adjustments that will help you cope. These are some lessons I learned that can make or break a boot camp experience.

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