How to think like a programmer

Jan 30, 2020
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Programming is problem solving. Learning to program may seem like an impossible task when you start; like anything else. If you have decided you want to learn to code, you are making a wise decision because the skill you gain will take you a long way in your career and if you want to become an entrepreneur. Programming is a thought process, so how do you learn to think like a programmer?

1) Learn persistence and patient: Programmers are persistent and patient people. They work round the clock and often seem lost in their own world whenever they are coding, a lot of what is happening then is that they are constantly solving problems debugging, which can be time consuming, so being persistence and patient pays off. There is a steep learning curve to programming for most people and a lot of times people give up before they are able to get anywhere with it. Starting with a simple language and being persistent enough to keep going with it should reap benefits and you will be building in no time.

2) Have a learners mind: Yes you are learning, but are you in the right frame of mind? Learning to program is like solving a puzzle, and solving a puzzle means finding the pieces that must fit together and that is learning. A learner is open to gleaning knowledge without feeling like it can’t be done.

3) Think in steps: Learn to organize information and be more structured in your reasoning. This would be learning to think critically. There are practical ways you can learn to be a better critical thinker, you can practice by finding what does not add up when having a conversation with a friend, by using logic and inferring by thinking in steps.

4) Think creatively: Learning the basic syntax of programming is the easier part, the rest is learning how to solve problems by thinking creatively. You should learn how to break problems down to make them easier to solve.

5) Be a better collaborator: Programmings is best done when you have people you can ask for help when you need it. People who have more experience than you can make your coding process easier. It could be through online forums or in person collaboration.

Learning how to code is less about the doing, and more about learning how to think to make the process easier. Like everything else, it won’t come over night, but you will get more from putting in the time to get what you want.