Being a freelancer, it’s more important than ever to keep your skills up-to-date and sharp. In the tech world, this is no easy feat, as everyday that passes by a new technology stack and/or framework pops out of nowhere. It’s too bad we can’t just upload the information we need in an instant like in The Matrix…although, I’m sure someone is working on this.
So how do you juggle this ever expanding field of knowledge? Here are a few tips and ideas:
Keeping Up with The Joneses…or Not
Instead of keeping up with all the numerous skills, tools, trends, styles, (or in my case, programming languages and frameworks) in your respective field, choose only a handful and become a master at them. Trust me, you’ll go crazy if you don’t. If you’re in the tech world, you’ll know that technology is changing at an amazingly rapid rate and trying to keep up with everything is impossible. So pick what skills you like and a few that you need to learn, make sure there is a good-sized audience, and master the hell out of them.
There are plenty of YouTube videos on whatever subject you’re interested in. A great YouTube channel I’ve found for programming is Traversy Media. They’ve got all kinds languages for all kinds of levels…beginner, intermediate and advanced. Best thing is it’s free!
Of course there are other online video sources like Udemy.com and SkillShare.com where you pay a nominal fee (wait for those $10/$15 sales!).
Join and Attend Meetup Groups
Meetup groups are a great way to not only network with like minded people but learn a thing or two. They are usually free form so bring your questions.
Sign Up for Workshops
There are tons of workshops, seminars and conferences on every topic imaginable. Some of these will cost you an arm and a leg, especially if you’re just starting out freelancing and every penny counts. However, if you search thoroughly, you may be able find some that are on the less expensive side and sometimes even free. For example, I just signed up for WordCamp Santa Clarita 2019. This will be 2 days of some fun learning and the cost was just $40! Yup, $40 total for both days. Talk about a bargain. The workshop is this weekend, April 5-6, so get your tickets and come join me for some learnin’!
If you’re going, I’ll see you there. If not, I’ll be sure to write up a blog post of my findings so stay tuned.
How do you stay up-to-date on your skills? Let me know in the comments.