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December 16, 2022 - 5 minutes

Struggling Mid-Bootcamp? Read This!

Things worth doing are rarely easy. Time to refocus, re-motivate, and get back on track!

Ironhack - Changing The Future of Tech Education

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage," said Anaïs Nin, a Franco-Cuban author. The day you decided to attend this coding bootcamp, you expanded your professional horizons. 

A bootcamp is an exciting learning experience; it's also about meeting teachers and learners who will form part of your network tomorrow, some of whom may have already become your friends. It's an overall very positive experience, but one that also requires dedication, motivation, and work ethic. 

If you are sometimes discouraged by the work still to be done, here are 5 tips that have helped graduates before you achieve their professional dream.

Reach Out To Your Teachers 

Your first compass or lifeline is your teachers. On campus, you can talk to them in person and for remote courses, they are also available on Slack. It's important that you feel comfortable asking them whatever questions you may have.

What can your teachers do for you?

  • Unblock you on a specific code or methodology point 

  • Help you organize your work 

  • Offer you additional resources to better understand the course content

  • Simply give you support! As Jason Mraz would say, we're only humans. If you simply lack motivation, a good dose of listening and empathy can get you back on track

  • Give you a new objective. Sometimes making a commitment to another person is very motivating. 

Reach Out To Your Fellow IronHackers 

Have you made friends with your classmates?  Community is what makes you strong. Don't be afraid to admit that you're struggling with a project or technology or that your motivation to finish the bootcamp has taken a hit.You won't be the first! Feedback from your fellow students will make you feel better. 

Your confidence will also create a virtuous circle of trust: your fellow Ironhackers will dare to come to you more if they feel overwhelmed or unmotivated. And we bet you'll be happy to help them overcome their own difficulties. We strongly encourage you to keep this spirit of promotion alive in the bootcamp. You'll see, it's magical.

Get In Touch With Your Student Outcome Representative

You’re struggling with an administrative issue? You feel like your training is not going so well? Something else on your mind?

You can always reach out to your student outcome representative. It’s their job to make sure you’ve got everything you need to succeed in the bootcamp.

(Re)Focus On Your Why

Did your motivation decide to take a holiday? Between two coding projects, are you not too sure why you're here? It's time to zoom in hard on the reasons that pushed you to take on this bootcamp in the first place.

Was it... 

  • Your unfulfilled passion for code that you finally decided to follow?

  • Your desire to change your job for an activity that you enjoy and that feeds you intellectually? 

  • Your wish to receive a better salary at a tech job?

  • Do you want to start your own business as a developer and organize your time as you wish? 

  • Do you need to protect yourself from unemployment by learning a trade that is in high demand? 

  • Your goal is to work in a start-up or a big company that hires developers?

Or several of these points, or all of them at once? 

Remember: you have chosen this course carefully, read the syllabus, perhaps even taken advice from an alum. And then you decided it was the right course for you. Nothing worthwhile comes without effort: hang in there!

Identify What’s Stressing You Specifically

Last but not least, your discouragement may have a few sources. Perhaps you should look into how to unravel them... Here is a home-made method to analyze all this:

1. Identify the cause: What exactly is stressing you out? Is it the course itself or something outside the course? Is it something in your personal life? Is it the difficult balance between your job, course, and private life? Worries at work? 

2. Think about the solutions: What can you do about the cause(s) of stress? Talk to your boss, teacher, spouse? Organize your work and training routine better? Delegate some things? Have a better lifestyle (going to bed 1 hour earlier is an effective way to regulate your fatigue!).

3. Implement the solutions: Give yourself one goal per week to improve things. It must be achievable, clear, and measurable. For example, go to bed at a fixed time. Dedicate 3 hours a week to working out. Stop working after 7pm. Dedicate 4 hours a week to briefing and training a co-worker to increase their skills. Do a workgroup with a fellow Ironhacker to be more efficient together.

There is no shortage of solutions: once you have identified the problem, you can get creative.

So, do these solutions inspire you and give you hope? 

As you may have noticed, most of them come from your interactions with other people: teachers, fellow Ironhackers, work colleagues, relatives... 

The idea is not to put everything on them or expect them to do the work for you, of course, nor to rely on them or expect them to do the work for you, but rather to remember that a bootcamp is a collective adventure where you can count on the alchemy of the group to move forward. You will create it by asking for support and by supporting others: it goes both ways!

Remember: we all have our weaknesses and there is no shame in opening up to others and asking for help.

Hold on, you're almost there!

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