The web is okay

Like most things I write, the primary goal of this post is to give me a positivity kick. If you take anything away from this, that's pretty cool. As always, I can only speak to my own experiences. So:

We're just over two weeks into the new year, and things aren't looking great. The dominant feeling seems to be "oh no oh no oh no oh no oh no oh no". I mean, I feel pretty awful about it too.

I've spent a chunk of this week reading horrible rants about the industry and have dealt with some problematic people. I've watched friends become more and more distressed about the state of the web, their knowledge, and their ability to keep up with the trends.

A lot of this appears to be to do with the speed at which we perceive the web to be moving. Front-end tooling seems to be becoming a topic so large and so big I'm not sure what it is any more. Frameworks are everywhere in every moment of time and space. Your cat has opinions about ES6, too.

It's okay to feel stress in response to this rapid development. It's natural. I hate change, I hate it so so much. I like things to be consistent and for it to have it's own place. If it doesn't, I get stressed and my obsessive compulsive tendencies run riot in a desperate attempt to preserve order. This both benefits and hinders my work.

I started to work with the web a year and a half ago. I am often overwhelmed and it's difficult to keep upbeat when every day there is something new to learn. A year ago, I wrote on how everything is terrifying and I have no idea what I'm doing (As a Developer).

I think the most valuable thing I learned toward the end of last year was "lol, you are not gonna know everything ever, so stop trying". Not to give up completely, but to realise I am an average person with a certain amount of RAM and I can't do it all. Nor should I.

I spent my Christmas break working out what it was I wanted to achieve with the web, in 2016. I picked one goal: 'get better at JavaScript' and broke that into sub goals like 'understand Functional Programming' and 'write about the merits of the ES6 Class system'. That may seem like a little or a lot to you. I may learn more than that in by the end of the year, but I believe I will succeed if I even start to tackle that one goal.

There will always be something new, and the more you try to keep up with everything, the less you might end up learning. Pick one thing.

I think one way we ensure that we can keep doing good things is to, rather than punish ourselves, reframe the way we approach things.

I'd like it if you, even if you don't believe it yet, try to tell yourself that you are a capable person. I’m trying too, and it’s super hard. I'd also like you to recall what it was like to be someone new to the web and how difficult you may have found it. Did you flourish in an atmosphere where people told you you were crap and the things you built were rubbish? Try not to take that approach with anyone, beginner or not, who is ready to build amazing things.

You can't know everything and that's not a limitation of you, it is a fact of life. I think that we're going to be okay. The web is okay.