17th of December 2020 is a very important date for me. That day I officially froze my existing creative projects, in which I have been involved for years, and started learning programming.
It was a hard decision, because it was not easy to give up on projects I was developing and putting a lot of effort for years (blog, social media accounts, workshops & next ebook) in favor of a new, vast, completely unknown field in which I did not know if I could manage at all…
But I was extremely determined and I knew that if I want to master, I need to focus on programming learning only. No side projects, no distractions. So what caused my determination you may ask? Oh, there were a lot of very different reasons and that is what this article is about, so keep reading!
Influence of the Walter Isaacson’s Book “The Innovators”
I just love Isaacson’s books. I read his Steve Jobs & Leonardo da Vinci biographies (these two individuals inspire me a lot), so I was sure, that “The Innovators” will be great. But I didn’t expect, that the book will change my life, give me and make me addicted to a new hobby.
Honestly, I thought that programming is boring and there is no place for creativity. I’ve never been so wrong in my life… This book and stories about all of those creative individuals mentioned by Isaacson opened my eyes. I felt immediately, that I want and need to be one of those people, to belong to software & web developers community.
Creative Process Management Reasearch
Even though I had not been interested in programming, digital technologies or… transistors before I started reading “The Innovators”, I wanted to know, how engineers and programmers created their inventions in terms of creative process management, which was my actual interest and hobby at the time (and still is).
I was expecting, that my theory of Creative Process Management (published in my ebook and on my blog) will apply also in web development, but I couldn’t imagine, how it is similar to rules I was using in my other creative activities.
I’ve understood, that there is no difference between painting, composing music, writing a book and programming in terms of Creative Process Management rules. In addition, I realized that by knowing how to program, I would be able to create applications that will help creators (including myself) to organize their creative process & notes!
I like intellectual challenges, so one of the reasons I’ve decided to test myself in programming learning were questions, I was curious to answer:
- Is programming really boring? (No!)
- Is there a place for creativity? (Oh, yes!)
- Are my intellectual abilities sufficient to master it? (Yes ;-)
- Can I manage this without previous programming experience? (With no doubt)
- Would my previous creative experience be useful? (A lot!)
- How far can I dive into it and how long it would take? (See my portfolio ;-)
A Few Apps Ideas
I wanted to learn programming to develop a few apps I had in mind before I wrote my first “Hello, World”:
- mind mapping app with the possibility to put keywords in any place on the canvas (done!)
- tagged notes app to organize and easy filter my notes (done!)
- my own blogging platform (done!) … and many other ideas – some of them are in progress, some of them are done.
Also I wanted to create my own personal web site from scratch with blogging features and a possibility to publish and run my apps. I had a website that was created by my friend Piotr, about whom I’ll talk more below, but… I wanted to run my apps on it and there were no possibilities to do that & I also wanted to be independent.
I’ve created a lot of things, music, articles, mind maps, sketchnotes, content and even wrote 2 ebooks, but… this time I wanted to create something that others could interact with, something that is usefull & available globally. That was a new stage of my creative self-development.
I Could Count on the Help & Guidance of a Friend
I have a friend, Piotr Wnuczek, and he is a programmer & web developer. He built a website for me, when I decided to run a blog in 2018, and without his help I couldn’t reach so many people with my articles.
So when I was thinking about the possibility of learning web development & programming, I had a living example that it is possible, because I was a witness of Piotr’s programming development and successes. So I considered, that if he could, I also can try.
Besides I knew, that there is a person, who can guide me and give me a hand if I need to. And I was right! We often see each other and every time I’m visiting him, he gives me precious advises.
Now you know almost everything about my reasons to freeze my previous long-term projects to make a space for undistracted programming learning. I'd never decide to dive into programming world, if there was only one of mentioned reasons - it all worked together. And I'm happy - that was a best decision in my life.