Sahara walking, black bag in right hand, pink scarf, pointing with left hand to the left

If there's one thing I for sure haven't been doing, it's setting month work-related-improving-skill-set-goals. I'm not really sure how I fell of that wagon of doing that - I used to always create side projects to level up on my skillset to make myself marketable for jobs while I was searching. Well, I guess that's the answer to the how I feel off the wagon question. 

I would have to say my tech goals related to improving my skills are in two categories - the things I should be improving on related to what I do in my day to day and the things that I want to explore for the first time within my field. There is a feeling of wonder with the latter option - from Augmented Reality to Machine Learning, there's a lot I want to dip my toes into, it's like the tech field is an ocean and I am only currently just brushing against it from the shore.

When it comes to what I work in day to day - I know I have some things I need to get better at, in all honesty when I think about how many things I need to do I honestly feel imposter syndrome beckoning me like a grim reaper - it's not that I'm without a brain, even though it does sometimes feel that way, it's that there's a lot that I know I have to level up in.

The first step of leveling up though is acknowledging the level I am at now.

This is the hard part. I know a lot, but I sometimes feel I don't know anything at all. I have a Computer Science Degree, and two certifications to my name and still feel like I am without any of them. I don't know everything, and that's okay - I'm not Google. It's the embracing where I am that I have some difficulty with because I don't like that feeling of 'you're at X spot when you should realistically be at Y'. At the end of the day though, the sooner I embrace where I am, the sooner I can take that next stepping stone of getting to where I want to be.

So, this is where this blog post comes in. I wanted to set list of things I wanted to accomplish this November wise - yes it is the middle of November, the 15th to be exact, but that doesn't mean it's too late to make a goal list.

I know a lot, but there's so much I am in the dark of in my field - it's time to bring the light.

Work Related Skillset Improvement List

1. Get to middle of Bootstrap Course

Bootstrap is an Open Source Cascading Style Sheet framework that is focused in responsive Front End Web Development. I know what Bootstrap is, and I've done the section on Bootstrap on FreeCodeCamp, but there's still a lot that I don't know so this is where the course comes in. The issue I have with courses is more-so stemming from the way I learn. I don't want to get stuck in tutorial land, which sometimes feels like the vibe from courses. I was doing a React Course and that's exactly how it felt. 

My learning style is Kinesthetic (learn by doing) and Visual (learn by seeing). So a tutorial is great for me to visually learn, but things won't lock into place in my mind unless I do something on my own with it without the guidance of a tutorial.

2. Complete 1 side project

I want to create side projects related to the course to solidify what I'm learning but also, not related to the course because that's not fun. I want to learn in public, and share projects I'm working on every week with you all like I did in the past - from my Cryptography Project to my Augmented Realty Snowman. I haven't been doing a lot of side projects, but I want to. I miss it. 

3. Finish a few chapters from Eloquent JavaScript

I've seen this book in passing and feel I can learn a lot from it - I do know JavaScript, and have a certification in Data Structures and Algorithms - but that doesn't mean I know everything. There's some gap in my knowledge, and I aim to make this missing puzzle piece.

Fun things I want to do just because I can List

1. Make something in Unity

Unity is something I have downloaded on my computer but haven't nudged myself along to actually take a deep dive in just yet - and I want to change that. If you aren't subscribed to Jennifer Opal's newsletter and are in tech yourself, you should really consider subscribing! I was inspired by her watch project she created in Unity to give it a try, finally.

I just want to make something in it, and I welcome that learning curve.

2. Finish the Blendr tutorial on a Donut

Blendr is a 3D modeling software - this comes into play for Augmented Reality whether that be for games or for Instagram Filters.  The tutorial that I'm doing is from Blendr Guru - making a realistic donut. So this is more of a two prong thing: Once I finish the tutorial, then I will know enough to create my own 3D modeling object for an Instagram filter I've been sketching out.

I've never really made a list relating to my tech journey on things to tick off a list and I actually wouldn't have unless a friend mentioned it to me over on Twitter as a way to keep leveling up my skills. I think the importance of having a list of things to check off is to make sure that you're always increasing your knowledge and aren't just ~floating~ where you are. I'm hoping it helps with setting concrete things for me to accomplish. Yes, it's mid-novemeber, but that doesn't mean I can't get started on ticking these off my list. To be fair, nothing is as satisfying as crossing something off a list.

Anyone else set goals for November? Let's get chatting!

ps. I did take completely different photos for this but didn't like any of them, gotta love that natural lighting is now in very small windows of time with Daylight Savings!

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