Teaching Myself How to Code

When you have passion and drive, nothing can stand in your way. Make it happen.

In my case, everything was moving fast and falling in line. I had meeting after meeting set up with customers ready to test a demo and only when it was time to move on to the next big step did I find out that I had to start all over. I felt completely alone and lost. After a couple days of trying to figure out a solution, I knew the only thing I could do was to keep pushing. I’m disciplined, dedicated and devoted to my startup. So that’s when I decided to teach myself how to code.

Granted, I have other options now and my intent is not to completely run it alone, I still knew that learning how to code would be an invaluable skill. It will help me communicate better with developers and help me analyze and understand my company inside and out. I never imagined I would learn programming but now that I’ve started, I can’t believe it’s taken me this long. Building something out of an idea and then watching it come to life is such a powerful feeling.

I began Treehouse on January 31st with a goal to build my new website and learn the basics of a Rails application in one month. I’m happy to say that I have finished the site and will be launching it next week. I plan to write an entire post on my love for Treehouse, but short and sweet: The satisfaction I get from earning a badge after completing a course is something I haven’t experienced in years.

Here are a few of the badges I earned in my Ruby courses.

In order to speed the learning process up, I decided to take courses in HTML/CSS, and Ruby. All at once. I wouldn’t recommend doing it that way. Treehouse offers Learning Adventures that take you through all of the courses to become a web designer or web developer. That’s the best route. If you’d like to start learning, click one of the photos in this post or the referral link in my sidebar.

I’ve always wanted to learn a new language. I just didn’t know it would be a programming language.

Teach Yourself How to Code:

1) Treehouse

‘Our mission is to bring affordable Technology education to people everywhere, in order to help them achieve their dreams and change the world.’

2) Codeacademy

‘Codecademy is a team of hackers working hard to build a better way for anyone to teach, and learn, how to code. We’re determined to succeed in realizing our mission to turn a world of tech consumers into one of empowered builders.’

3) Code School

‘Code School opens the door to a new way of learning by combining video, coding in the browser, and gamification to make learning a new technology fun!’

3) LearnStreet

‘LearnStreet is an early-stage startup focused on changing the way people of all backgrounds and skill levels learn how to code.’

4) CodeHS

‘The goal of CodeHS is to spread the knowledge of computer science by offering well crafted instructional materials supported continuously by the quality, personal attention of our enthusiastic tutors. We believe that everyone has the ability to learn computer science, and we want to help them do so.’

5) Khan Academy

‘We’re a not-for-profit with the goal of changing education for the better by providing a free world-class education for anyone anywhere.’

6) Udacity

‘Our mission is to bring accessible, affordable, engaging, and highly effective higher education to the world. We believe that higher education is a basic human right, and we seek to empower our students to advance their education and careers.’

7) Udemy

‘Udemy helps students make moves. Whether you want to get promoted, break into a new industry, start a company, further a passion, or just accelerate your life, Udemy helps you learn from the amazing instructors in the world, so that you can get there and get there faster.’

If you haven’t seen this awesome video yet by Code.org, take a few minutes now. Enjoy!

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Comments ( 5 )
  • Eric Gohs says:

    Great post, Janine. While I don’t use it anymore, learning basic HTML 12 years ago shifted the direction of my career completely. From copywriter to digital marketing guy. Understanding how code works and being able to have real conversations with the developers and web creatives makes my job infinitely easier and more fun. Best of luck with your start-up!

  • Matthew Boston says:

    Glad to hear that you’ve taken it upon yourself to learn to code. Very impressive. You should take a look at http://girldevelopitcbus.com/. I know several of the instructors and students that have gone through. This would be a great way for you to get a hands on, and more social approach to learning to code. Get out of the building, right?

    Good luck to you on your new and exciting adventure.

    • Janine Renee says:


      Thanks for the advice. I’ve heard a lot about Girl DevelopIt and would love to get involved at some capacity. I am fortunate to have a great team of people around me when I’m working at the coffeeshop so that I can ask questions and get help when needed as well. I don’t intend to do this full time, but I am certainly glad I started! Thanks again 🙂

  • A New Chapter for NextChapter | Just Start says:

    […] new chapter began a couple months ago when I taught myself how to code. From there, things with the company have been moving quickly once again but in a different […]

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