Were You Born to Code?

Here Are 7 Ways to Know

If you’ve ever wondered whether you were born to code or not, the good news is: You were! Coding is something that anybody can learn and – with a bit of practice – become very good at. If you’re still unsure about your abilities, here are 7 qualities that experts believe can make you a good coder.

Note: If you possess some of these qualities, great! If not, don’t worry. You’ll pick them up as you learn to code.

Learn to code
Image via Flickr by Greencolander

1. You Love Solving Problems

But not just any problems. You enjoy solving difficult and complicated problems that require hours of trial and error. Think crossword puzzles, Rubik’s cubes, and Sudoku. Similarly, coders must use their problem-solving skills to resolve complex issues like debugging poorly written code, updating old software packages and expanding inefficient programs. Therefore, you must have a knack for identifying problems, finding practical solutions and executing changes.

2. You’re Collaborative

Although coders are sometimes thought to be solitary, introverted and withdrawn, professional coding actually requires a lot of collaboration. After all, it’s rare that coders will ever build websites, write programs or design software without the input of managers, marketers, salespeople, clients and other tech professionals. For this reason, you should have strong communication skills and take pride in being a team player.

3. You’re Curious

When something important breaks, do you wonder what went wrong? Or do you throw it away without thinking twice? To succeed in the world of code, you must tackle problems with enough curiosity to ask yourself – and others – “What went wrong?”, “Why did it go wrong?” and “How can I fix it?”

4. You’re Not Afraid to Fail

As tech visionary Steve Jobs once said, “If you’re afraid of failing, you won’t get very far.” Most coders consider failure to be a necessary step in the programming process. They accept that they won’t get everything right on the first try and that failure is ultimately a learning opportunity – and you shouldn’t find anything scary about that.

5. You’re Flexible

Are you comfortable with ever-changing circumstances? Do you enjoy doing something different every day? Can you take on new challenges at short notice? As a coder, it’s important that you not only be open to change but also be willing to adapt to it quickly. This flexibility will make it easier for you to switch between projects, contexts, requests and emergencies in a professional setting.

Being flexible coderImage via Flickr by hackNY

6. You’re (Somewhat) Technical

Being a good coder doesn’t require advanced technical skills immediately (so don’t feel bad if you’re unfamiliar with Cygwin or pointer arithmetic) but it does require a propensity for technology. This means that you have an ability and a desire to understand computers, computer languages and computational processes – all areas that coders have knowledge in.

7. You’re a Lifelong Learner

Whether you’re sitting in a classroom or standing in the checkout line at a supermarket, you’re always open to learning, which is one of the most important characteristics of a coder. Remember: Tech is dynamic. Current technologies that are used now will probably be outdated in a few years, so coders must
develop long-lasting skills, stay on their toes and keep up with new trends, languages, systems and more.

If you didn’t enter the world knowing how to code, don’t stress it. As long as you’re willing to try, you were still born to code!

Published by

Meghan Williams

Meghan is a 42 Silicon Valley student from Clearwater, Florida with a background in writing and logistics.