Happy Coding

Locus of Control and Learned Helplessness in Coding

April 17, 2021

Have you ever felt like coding is an uphill battle, where you’re constantly fighting the computer without any real hope of ever making progress? Have you ever given up trying to learn something? Have you ever felt like you’re not cut out for any of this? Great news, that’s totally normal in computer science! The bad news is, that’s totally normal in computer science.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://happycoding.io/blog/locus-of-control-learned-helplessness
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Dear Kevin,
the fact that you write about these things here is already great news.
Talking about these topics helps everyone and makes “Happy Coding”
a good place to visit and to stay in.
I’m not a psychologist, but like any “software analyst” I like them
the reflections.
So thank you.
I believe that our work or our relationships with others must not be “our show”,
but our part in the “spectacle of life”.
Too much confidence or too much fear of failure can depend on pride and
I think pride is a useless feeling, especially if it comes before victory.
Above all, we must have the ability to love a goal.
A great Italian comedian of the early 1900s, Ettore Petrolini,
in a satire on a foolish and vain actor he said: “… he had no “horror” of himself …”.
We must have a certain “detachment” from ourselves to be enthusiastic about an idea.
This would also be a good “locus of control”.
Ciao!

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Thanks! And yeah, a lot of that resonates with me. Sometimes I feel like I’m two people: I’m me, but I’m also the person observing me.

I’m not sure if that makes sense, but I tend to have a little bit of a detachment from my own thoughts and feelings. This leads to questions like “okay, you feel this way, but why do you feel this way?” which leads me down rabbit holes like this one.

I don’t think I’m a particularly deep thinker, but I do spend a lot of time thinking about “the why” behind my feelings. I like writing them down to get them out of my brain, and if they resonate with anybody else, that’s a bonus!