After Zuri, What's Next? How to manage your expectations

In a world where tech success stories flood our social media feeds, it's easy to fall into the trap of false stereotypes about the industry. From the outside, it may seem like every aspiring tech enthusiast swiftly transforms into the next Mark Zuckerberg or Elon Musk. However, the reality is far more nuanced. Managing your expectations as you embark on your own tech journey is crucial for long-term success and fulfillment.

False Stereotypes About Tech:

The media and tech influencers usually paint an overnight success for people in tech. This portrayal can create unrealistic expectations for those just starting out. Many believe that success in tech is synonymous with instant wealth, leading to disappointment when their journey unfolds differently.

You should have heard the “Learn a tech skill in 3 months and earn over $10k” cliché statement; Now this is a very unrealistic statement as no one without prior knowledge in tech and enough experience can earn such under a year. 

Furthermore, the emphasis on young prodigies and college dropouts who strike it rich perpetuates the myth that formal education and experience are unnecessary in tech. While it's true that some individuals have achieved remarkable success without traditional credentials, these cases are special rather than the norm. Most tech professionals undergo years of education, training, and hands-on experience to reach their goals.

What a Real Tech Journey Looks Like:

Contrary to popular belief, a real tech journey is rarely a straight path from point A to point B. It's characterized by continuous learning, perseverance, and adaptability.

For many, the journey begins with a genuine passion for technology and a desire to make a difference. Whether it's coding, design, data analysis, or cybersecurity, individuals often start by honing their skills through self-study, online courses, or formal education programs. Along the way, they encounter setbacks, failures, and moments of self-doubt. Yet, it's these challenges that foster growth and resilience.
You might start out with a few courses for 3 months, learning, practicing and fixing technical errors as they arise. When you are done, you might be required to learn additional skills as the courses might not be sufficient to start providing solutions to people. These can take another 3 to 4 months depending on your consistency. Then you have to build portfolio projects to actually gain some experience. This is the time you collaborate with people, peers and volunteer to get some working experience. This can take anywhere from 6 months up. Now you have exhausted a year of learning and getting experience. This is besides any other setbacks you might encounter while on this journey. 

Success in tech is rarely instantaneous. It's the result of years of hard work, dedication, and a willingness to push past obstacles. It's about embracing failure as a learning opportunity and continually striving for improvement. Moreover, it's important to remember that success looks different for everyone. Whether it's landing your dream job, launching a startup, or making a meaningful impact in your community, defining your own metrics of success is essential.

How to Manage Your Expectations:

Managing your expectations is key to navigating your tech journey with confidence and clarity. Here are some tips to help you stay grounded:

1. Set Realistic Goals: Instead of aiming for overnight success, focus on setting achievable short-term and long-term goals. Break down larger objectives into smaller, manageable tasks, and celebrate your progress along the way.

2. Embrace the Learning Process: Recognize that learning is a lifelong journey. Stay curious, explore new technologies and concepts, and don't be afraid to ask for help when needed. Remember, every setback is an opportunity to learn and grow.

3. Stay Flexible: The tech industry is constantly evolving, and so should your plans and expectations. Stay flexible and adaptable in the face of change, and be open to exploring new opportunities that may arise unexpectedly.

4. Seek Support: Surround yourself with mentors, peers, and communities who can offer guidance, encouragement, and support. Building a strong network of like-minded individuals can help you navigate challenges and stay motivated during the tough times.

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