How to stop feeling like a beginner – My favourite talk at PyCon 2018

I was fortunate to be able to attend PyCon 2018 with the Bungalow engineering team in November.

This two day conference had a variety of talks and streams appropriate for both beginners and experts. The topics ranged from the state of quantum computing in Python to how to properly write conditional statements. It was also an excellent opportunity to network with the larger Python community.

My favourite talk happened to be one of the non-technical, shorter talks. Perhaps because it touched on something I personally struggle with.

The journey from mediocrity: how to stop feeling like a beginner

Victoria Mothersill gave a non-technical talk on dealing with imposter syndrome and there were more than a few really strong takeaways:

  • You will always be able to find something you suck at if you look hard enough.
  • Having a growth mindset will only help you. Instead of saying “I am good”, say “I did good”.
  • Hang out with other smart people.
  • Embrace being wrong.
  • Take the time to automate the little tasks. You know what they are!
  • Document. Comment. Test.
  • Remember coding is all about communication.
  • Take the time to format your code before you PR it to avoid comments that are just format related.

And my personal favourite, and new mantra…

  • Don’t try to be a good programmer, try to be a better programmer.


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