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77 Comments

I feel scared, I feel like giving up. What do I do?

I am currently jobless despite having learnt so many programming languages. I am behind my bills, I feel depressed and tired despite coding for 7 years, I really have nothing to show for it.

Any advice that can help me get out of this dark place.

  1. 16

    Give yourself a Job.

    Think of a product, and code it, and build it in public.

    Talk to people on Twitter or IndieHackers.

    DM them, ask for feedback, improve it.

    Document everything on a blog. Write every day.

    Do this for at least 3 months, there should be positive results.

    If nothing, you will have enough content for a course/e-book/info product and 3 months of authenticity behind it to try to sell it.

    But before anything else, put on a real display picture. If you want to make a living online, you need to build trust and authenticity, and being a real person is the 1st step towards that.

    1. 6

      Thanks for this, they say a lot can change in 3 months, l have jotted down every piece of advise that you have said....and about the profile picture l am uploading it right away .
      l have given you a follow and taken a screenshot of your profile so after 3 months of implementing what you have told me ,l will come back with the results.
      Stay blessed.

      1. 2

        Good Stuff Ramsey
        👍
        I've followed you, looking forward to great things for you.

        If you need help or support with anything, DM me on Twitter. Would be happy to do whatever I can.

        1. 2

          Thanks so much, l will surely reach out since l know this journey can't be fulfilled alone. May blessings with love come your way.

    2. 4

      This is really bad advice. For competent developers, there are currently more jobs openings available than people to fill them.

      Now is not the time to flounder around on startup ideas and writing random blog posts. Take a job, get those billed paid, save up an emergency fund and indie hack on the side.

      1. 1

        Agreed.

        The initial tone of the post suggested that the "finding jobs" option was already tried and didn't work out.

        I would add to my comment -- "Find a Job, if you can"

        Having the certainty of a job in such an uncertain situation is the best thing you can have.

        But it might be tough.

        And especially when times are bad, everything seems to go against you, getting a rejection from a job you deeply aspire can worsen the depression.

        I speak from personal experience. Continuous job hunts and rejections take a heavy toll on one's confidence levels.

        While in fact, the reason for rejection could be something as random as the an interviewer not liking the color of your shirt (again, personal experience haha.. :P)

        At such times, I have felt it's best to focus on the things you CAN control, which is your own actions.

        Have input focused goals. Building something in 3 months and documenting the journey is an input focused goal.

        And putting yourself out there on the internet can create some lucky chances which won't have happened if you didn't do it.

        That is my only limited point.

        Otherwise, to each his own.

        Thanks for your comment @cpursley, it helped relook at my initial advice and go a bit deeper with my point 🙏

  2. 7

    Start showcasing your work through avenues like YouTube, GitHub.
    When you give more to the community, you receive more. That's what I have learnt from experience! I start my own YouTube channel too, and I enjoy giving back to the community and it helped me enjoy my craft too!

    Meanwhile, you need a job to catch up on finances. The world needs developers. Check out sites like https://remoteok.io/ or https://angel.co/! Join Facebook groups on technology - people post dozens of jobs there everyday. 7 years of experience is huge! I am sure your skills are in good demand.

    Simultaneously, think about a problem you are truly passionate about solving for and work on it. This will be your side project. Build your portfolio. Start small, but think big.

    Wish you the best! :)

    1. 4

      Thanks so much ,l feel so much better now having people holding my hand and helping me rise back up.
      I have subbed to your channel and I have shared your react playlist to a friend of mine who has found them useful.
      Thanks for the above sites l have already enrolled and refining my profile to best fit the jobs available.
      Stay blessed.

      1. 1

        That's great to hear Rama! Thanks for the subscribe, and glad to hear its useful!

        You're on the right path! Keep going 💪🏼💪🏼💪🏼

  3. 7
    • Go to Udemy and create a course based on your experience with a programming language. There are plenty of courses but very few based on real life projects. You may start making some passive income from this.
    • Go to Github and start a "side project" to keep you on track and visible.
    • Check on sites like MeetUp if you can meet people in your area working in your field. It's good for your network and good to keep your skills up to date.
    1. 3

      Thank you so much for this....l just wrote down everything that you've said. Any ray of hope will be me get through this dark storm.
      Stay blessed.

  4. 6

    One thing that has helped me a lot whenever I have gone through extremely stressful periods, such as quitting my job and starting my own business, is finding time to disconnect. Going for walks, going to the gym, meeting friends and family, even just picking up the phone and calling somebody have become moments that I cherish. Especially walks have been really good for me to get out of my own brain and remove the irrationality. Writing has also been very good for me with respect to processing my thoughts and feelings. Often times, when I am stressed and write down why I am stressed, I realize that there is actually no good reason to be stressed. If you do this I believe you will quickly notice that the last 7 years have not been for nothing!

    It's also important to be honest with yourself. What have you truly done a good job at recently? Where could you improve? What are you maybe not as good at as you like to think you are?

    You've got this Rama and whatever you do, don't stop!

    1. 2

      This is great advice, I totally agree.

      Rama, if I could add to this some of the things that has helped me a lot during a similar experience recently, and that is to create some routine in your day and be disciplined with it. I do this by

      • Wake up early (leave your alarm far from bed so you need to get up to turn it off)
      • Do some exercise, even if its 5 minutes to start with and outside if possible
      • Write down whatever you're thinking, let the pen wander and you could even finish with 3 points of gratitude
      • Write down 1-3 simple small goals to achieve that day
      • Cross each goal off as you complete it and take a moment to be proud of the progress you're making
      • Learn. Learn about all the things that interest you the most and as much random stuff as possible.
      • Keep talking to people about your experience
      1. 1

        Thanks so much for this ,l have written down this helpful tips and many others as start this new journey in my life. Thank you again Mrlukecurtis,,,stay blessed.
        After 3 months of consistently applying myself to better ways of doing things ,l will come back and give an update

    2. 2

      Thanks ...this words hit deep and maybe l needed to reflect and write down everything and be honest with myself...a lot may be uncovered through out this process. Will keep you posted on the progress.
      Thanks and stay blessed.

  5. 4

    Sometimes the situation can make things dark and sometimes the darkness can make the situation. A lot of people are suffering from depression right now. I speak from experience when I offer my support and suggestion that perhaps you need to talk to someone about your health. For me, when my depression was treated it helped. Without depression I felt as if I could take on any challenges. But when my depression was darkest I felt as if my energy was outmatched by the challenges I faced and It was hard to see down the road to better times. Be kind to yourself. Be honest and consider if it's a possibility that you are like me and that help might make a difference. I've come to believe that the best things in life come when we need each other because that's what brings us together. I'm with you.

    1. 3

      I am grateful for this ,l will look at it and seek further help as you have suggested, though l mentally feel stable and relaxed .It's more of me not being able to excel in programming as l would have loved to.

  6. 4

    Take freelancer projects.

    1. 1

      l have tried this but l haven't found any luck with Fiverr maybe you can suggest any that has worked for you?

      1. 4

        Fiverr is not a good place for serious freelance jobs.

        What are your skills? What projects have you done? Create a portfolio page to showcase your skills and past projects. Any testimonial? Treat your freelancer "job" as a startup/indie hacker. Find a niche that you are good at and there is a demand. Contact potential customers and offer to do the project and pay later.

        1. 1

          Thanks for this l will surely out in the work into advise for 3 months consistently and share the progress, l have mostly never thought in that line that you have just shared.

      2. 2

        Upwork definitely work. But I have found all of my clients through Hacker News. It's strange that it's work this way but the reality is you can find plenty of clients though hacker news.

        1. 1

          Thanks I have just registered on Upwork and subscribed to Hacker News. I am open to anything right now since well, I have nothing.

          1. 2

            Okay. Let's work on your upwork profile. Here is what you have to do to success in Upwork.

            Increase your rate to 3x. Yes and apply lot of hourly rate projects.

            Make a habit of apply 5 jobs daily. Pay upwork if you don't have any connect to apply for the job.

            Quote low cost to fixed rate project and high cost to hourly rate projects.

            Do not copy/paste your proposals. One thing I learnt from applying lot of proposal is that you have to do it from the heart. Read the JD and express your interest about how you can help them achieve something.

            Once you do above then you will get some clients. Do good work there and you can shine.

            Regarding the product and saas don't go into this way if you are not good with marketing.

            Happy indie hacking .

            1. 2

              Thanks for this ,....l have carefully written everything and l will for sure follow what you have adviced when refining my Upwork profile, when I face challenges from time to time, l could contact you, if that's alright with you?

              1. 2

                yes Rama you can contact me anytime. It's best we continue our discussion in twitter DM. Follow me on twitter here https://twitter.com/rajasimon

                1. 1

                  Thanks, l have just given you a follow.
                  Stay blessed.

              2. 1

                This comment was deleted a month ago.

      3. 2

        Hey Ramsey, You could possibly look at upwork for freelance work, create a profile there with some portfolio projects and start bidding/talking there for projects. You would surely get one. Much better than fiverr and freelancer. com , Happy to help :)

        1. 1

          Thanks so much , I can't stress how grateful l am for having met you and the dozens of supportive people in the comments .

  7. 3

    I am sorry to hear that. Everyone has had a period like this in their life. Just stop for a moment and think about what is happening in your life. Ask yourself what you want and start working towards it.

    I am currently working on building an audience, because I believe this is the best way to achieve something meaningful on the internet. I would advise you to create a blog, create social media accounts and start posting regularly. Just keep going and don't give up. Start sharing your programming knowledge and provide value to your readers. I can guarantee you that if you follow a regular schedule your life will change drastically for the better.

    Good luck.

    1. 2

      Thanks so much for this...l have decided to dedicate 3 months consistently on this and then l give an update on the progress.

      1. 2

        No problem. Just don't give up. If you don't give up you will never fail. And if you need some motivation and help you can always get get some support from the awesome IH community.

        1. 2

          Thanks ...l will keep you posted on my progress.. stay blessed

  8. 3

    Give up? Just take a step back and understand first what makes you happy. Go outside if you need to and breathe. Get off the computer and let your mind free up. Then plan your next course of action.

    I've been in your situation before, depressed, jobless, trying to understand where I fit in the world.

    Maybe programming isn't for you, maybe you are better suited for something much grandeur or different from what you've been told to focus on. This will take time to understand.

    In the meantime, if you need to make money now, here are a few resources you can check out for your skills:

    https://www.upwork.com/
    https://www.patreon.com/
    https://gumroad.com/
    https://neilpatel.com/blog/linkedin-marketplace/
    https://remoteok.io/

    1. 2

      Thank you for opening my mind to other possibilities and another form of looking at things in my life. The Neilpatel guide is also extremely insightful.

  9. 2

    Take care of your health, esp. mental health , its very important. Below are some tips which has helped me personally improve my productivity:
    1)Explore meditation or mindfulness ( Try this app https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=gov.va.mobilehealth.ncptsd.mindfulnesscoach&hl=en&gl=US . Its free and no BS stuff from US Gov)
    2)You seem quite young and fit ,but continue to stay active ,pick up some sports or workout routine which you can do daily or 3 or 5 times a week. Running is simple and quit effective also helps clear up the mind and bring out new ideas.
    3)Disconnect from everything : Use social media and internet judicially, even good platforms like this one ,limit the time you spend online unless its a proper course you are doing online. Choose the content you consume wisely, stay away from junk like tiktok or FB :D
    4) Keep at it: You may or may not notice results or improvements from any of these habits in near term but trust the power of compounding effect. You will get exponential benefits in the longer run if you keep at these consistently.

    Cheers, we are all rooting for you !!

    1. 2

      l am grateful for the phenomenal advice , I have already downloaded the app and written down what you have said.
      Thanks and stay blessed.

  10. 2

    There is always something to show for effort, even if it doesn't seem that way at times. Everything good or bad is all a learning, and it helps you grow and makes you the person that you are.

    Sometimes the best thing you can do is to take a walk, clear your head of the stress and give yourself space to create.

    Money is the easy thing, but that can be hard to see when you just see it going out. Sometimes that means just taking stock and get a job to pay the bills, but it doesn't mean giving up or selling out.

    There are so many opportunities out there. Especially for developers, and the world is moving to remote working so you can be anywhere and find it.

    If you are passionate about something you can build it. Whether that's 24/7 or just when you are not doing what's required to pay the bills. Nothing wrong with a side hustle, in fact I recommend it.

    Never give up, your always stronger than you feel, and if you feel rock bottom then you have the ride back up to look forward to.

    Stay safe and keep the dream alive :D

    1. 1

      Thanks David , l feel so much confident now and ready to make a comeback, having received practical solutions that I have never thought of before, from the dozens of comments received, , l know have a roadmap to take and am sure as you have said, I will come back stronger.
      Stay blessed.

  11. 2

    First, f*ck it! , You didn't come to this world to pay bills. Keep yourself up. If you have 7 years of coding experience. Just show your expertise by writing blogs, creating, or contributing to open source projects on Github. Then apply for jobs. This is an emerging industry, no way that you can't get a job.

    1. 1

      Thanks so much for the power boost on the intro,l have written down every piece of advice given here in short and pecise notes, yours too, l will d o this consistently for 3 months and come back with the results of how much progress I have made. I feel so much stronger with all guys holding my hand and helping me to rise from turmoil.

  12. 2

    Don't think about giving up! give yourself time to think about where you are and where you want to be. write a detailed plan, ask for help and execute.
    I'm rooting for you!

    1. 1

      My God am in tears now after getting all this support, l didn't know such a large number of people would stand by me through this hellish moment,
      Thanks Hishamhwr for your belief in me.

  13. 2

    Hey man, It's sad to hear that you're struggling. Maybe this advice is worthless to you right now, but try to do more networking on LinkedIn by writing a few blog post about something you know and showing yourself a little more in there.

    Knowing people is more important than your coding skills.

    I hope you get through this the best you can 💪🏻

    1. 1

      Thanks so much, this had just hit me hard maybe it's because l was tooo engrossed into coding that l forgot how to network with people? I can't stress how grateful l am for suggesting such an eye opening way of doing things thanks.

  14. 2

    Breathe. You'll get out of this, but it won't necessarily be quick or easy.

    Keep talking to people for practical and emotional support like you're doing now. Consider joining a mastermind group or two, ideally over video chat, so you have people who regularly keep up with you and your story.

    On the more practical side of things, identify a goal. What do you want to be able to show, exactly? I like starting with baby steps, personally. Perhaps step one is paying your bills. It's hard to give you advice without knowing more, but from what you've said, I might advise focusing. If you know a ton of programming languages, specialize in one area where you can provide value, where market demand is strong and you like the work. (Perhaps web development? HTML/CSS/JS) Ignore everything else. Work at that over time, and improve your skills and reputation to the point where you'll always have lucrative jobs. But start with baby steps and progress incrementally.

    Often people don't make progress over time because they keep shooting for the moon over and over again and falling back to Earth, rather than steadily walking up a staircase.

    1. 1

      Love the staircase analogy👏👏👏

      "Shooting for the moon" has this romantic vibe but in reality, life is all about taking one step after another without giving up.

      Much like a staircase. 🙏

    2. 1

      Thanks l though of narrowing down to a few programming languages but l feared loosing out on jobs...your words have helped me figure out how l can niche down to the best of my ability since well ,it seems after 7 years of doing so many things, I have only been left more confused and frustrated.
      Stay blessed.

  15. 2

    It's going to be okay. Just hang in there. Things will be better soon. It's like the darkest part of the night is just before the sunrise.

    I would welcome you to an experiment. In spiritual culture, they say giving is equal to receiving. It's based on Law of Karma. We get what we give. This rule is applicable for Money as well. If you have some savings, tithe. Tithing means giving 10% of your income to charitable and spiritual purposes. I know this is going to sound contradictory but it's important to tithe for people struggling with money because only then they will be permitted by Karma to receive.

    If you have a few hundred dollars, consider giving it to charities to see if this works. You might get new clients, your work may be easier, or you may find some income sources.

    What do you think about this?

    1. 1

      l am so open to anything that will help the situation, am writing down each and every piece of advice. I will implement your suggestion for 6 weeks then l will come back to you with an update.
      Thanks .Stay blessed.

      1. 2

        6 weeks is just more than a month. If you have total $1000 in savings, 10% of it is $100. Since you currently don't have a job, you can go up 15% or 20% if you want to. Divide that $200 by 6 weeks. That's about $33 per week. Looking forward to hearing your update.

        1. 1

          Thanks for this breakdown, I will keep you posted .
          Stay blessed.

  16. 2

    Do you apply for job as a developer? Why it doesn't work?

    1. 1

      Sadly most companies that l have worked for are under paying ad offering short term 3 months contract. After the contract is completed l have to start again from scratch ..it has been really tough.

      1. 2

        You should maybe try to create a Linkedin profile showing the work you've done for these companies and work with recrruiters to find a more permanent position. More and more companies go remote right now so it's not impossible.

        It's nice to create side project and Github stuff but in my experience it doesn't work and it takes a lot of time. Same with portfolio. Go for the quick solution to show what you can do for companies.

        1. 1

          This is immense ,thanks for sharing, l am so grateful

  17. 2

    I'd start or join a Project that I feel is really cool and good for the world. The first step is to understand what's important to YOU imo. If you are interested in the education and HR space check out my latest post or hit me up directly.

    1. 1

      Right now am open to anything that can help me get out of this abyss that l am in...l have given you a follow and l will surely check out your post and engage with you further.
      Thanks so much and stay blessed.

  18. 2

    Already some good recommendations here but I think the single most important thing no matter what you do out of those is to stay at it. Maybe not one specific area in particular but showing up every day.

    Your results will compound over time and good things happen to people that show up every day to do their best.

    1. 1

      Thank you Stefan, all you guys coming together helping me out navigate through this dark tunnel means a lot .Just by having people sharing possible solutions has reduced the fear and tension of failure that l had.
      I feel stronger and relieved after going through the supportive comments.
      After 3 months l will compile all the changes in my life and progress
      Stay blessed, brother.

      1. 2

        All the best mate 🎉

        Excited to hear about your progess.

  19. 1

    @Ramsey555 This is a shitty place to be and I'm sorry to hear. It sounds like you don't have the financial freedom to explore side projects right now so I would immediately start reaching out to potential clients as a developer.

    Find fast-growing companies in a niche that you know well, or have previous experience with. Dig out their contact details and get in touch directly. Include your Calendly link and book calls. Keep grinding - you'll get there!

  20. 1

    @Ramsey555 don't you ever give up tho. I have been through this and it sucks but I never gave up.

    People have given you good suggestions and IndieHackers is a good and positive community. You can list every suggestion given try working on the one by one.

    I would recommend doing online tutorials for sites like Wix/WordPress and joining affiliate programmes. You will have to be a dedicated promoter to succeed as an affiliate.

    You can also try gaming. I believe most gamers earn money through live streaming.

    All the best.

    1. 2

      Thanks so much bro, walai nashukuru sana ,niko down an hapa nimepata wasee mob wananiokolea sana...kuna stufff mob nime-learn nilikua nafaa kuanza kufanya kitambo but sikua najua kama ziko....Sasa nikuchapa job 3 months ntarudi na results

  21. 1

    If you are behind your bills you need a job. What is your linkedin profile?

    1. 1

      That's why am trying to get assistance on this incredible community and oh boy !! am all smiles now since have come to across various ways that can help improve my life that l never thought of before.

      Am super confident right now since everything that has been shared is very practical to me and am going all in actualize the received tips.
      here is my LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/ramsey555/.
      Thanks, any help will be appreciated

      1. 0

        Hi,

        Just being radically honest. I would never hire someone with such a profile. Why:

        • I don't see the attention to detail to sell yourself. How can I expect attention to detail to do my work in case I hire you?
        • The picture is too close up, take a more professional picture. Random example: https://www.linkedin.com/in/quinofernandez/
        • What the heck is Catalunya Technologies, and why are you putting that in your header in your profile?
        • Apparently, you have worked there for 3 years. Man, explain what you did there.
        • In "about", put some storytelling, explain what you like and what you are best at. I see a lot of things there, just keywords -there is a "skills" section in linkedin to set up keywords-
        • Education section empty. No education at all?

        All in all: I suggest you search for JUNIOR web developers on Linkedin with great profiles and see what are they doing right and just adapt it to your profile.

        Once you do this you can check again with me if you want. I can give you feedback again.

        You can also go to the "jobs" section on Linkedin and apply for remote jobs. But as I have said, you need to fix your profile first, or NO ONE will ever hire you.

        good luck!

        1. 1

          tough words but thanks anyway

          1. 1

            hey, my intention was not to hurt you, just to help. If you follow the steps your profile will be much more attractive to recruiters and companies that need developers.

            If you don't have any official studies consider going through some of the many courses available online, some even give you a certificate.

  22. 1

    Hi Rama, I'm running a websites called Deprocrastination to help people be productive. I think some of our posts might be useful to you.

    Specifically, check out this post:
    How to change yourself when you feel down and don't know where to start.

    Check out anything on our site and let me know if you need help with any specific productivity problem.

    All the best,
    Vita

    1. 2

      Vita first I wish admit that your blog/site is so beautiful ad inspiring and if you don't mind l will reach out t you for guidance when l will be creating mine ,since obviously I would love to borrow several things from it. I love it's green theme ,it has been implemented in a such a unique and warm manner that gives someone the feeling of relaxation and comfort. Phenomenal job on it.

      Secondly, l have gone through the blog post that you have shared and l can say I have leant something new in my life today ,this is a about the no more zero days challenges .
      I have also joined the subreddit that you have recommended towards the end of the post.
      I have already subbed to your emailing list for more gold nuggets. Am expecting much more priceless post from you and thanks so much for coming up with such an amazing website(already bookmarked).

      1. 1

        Hi Rama, great to hear that you found it useful!

        And thank you for the kind words. Happy to have you on our list :)

        No more zero days!

  23. -2

    This comment has been voted down. Click to show.

    1. 1

      it's was really tough till all the above wonderful people came by and shared so many things that l have never thought of doing which am sure upon putting and trying our what has been advised above,my situation will improve .
      Thanks for your comment though.

  24. 3

    This comment was deleted a month ago.

    1. 1

      Hello @sjtilston , how can reach out to you, I have already given you a follow and l can't see your inbox or an email address.

    2. 1

      Thanks so much for this chance, let me hit your inbox right away, stay blessed.

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