Step two: build your career!
This is the fun part. IT is very often the backbone of many different industries, which means that there are many different areas that you can pursue. Front-end development, back-end development, system administration, dev ops, witchcraft, data analysis – these doors are open and right in front of you.
But which one do you choose? Well, that depends. That’s probably not the answer you were seeking, but allow me to elaborate: you don’t even need to become a specialist. Generalists are needed just as often and it’s up to you if you find any of the aforementioned avenues interesting. But keep in mind that outside of them there are certain fields that you’ll encounter anyway that are worth learning, like databases, system console commands, repositories, etc. Make sure you’re up to speed with those during your career, as they are great building blocks for further expansion of your abilities.
Did I mention that this is your career now? That’s right, so despite what the internet is saying, it’s perfectly fine to not code in your spare time, to not be super passionate about the frameworks and to just generally lead your life like a normal person that is not a geek at all. Of course, it’s great to have a passion for programming when you’re programming because everybody loves to love their jobs, but it’s never a requirement.
On the off-hand that you feel that you’re stagnating or have the fear of falling behind when you go on a holiday, here’s a tip: what counts the most is your logical thinking. As long as you can do that, you’ll learn the latest and greatest programming techniques in no time, even after a long break.
Step three: profit?
There’s a well-known saying: “When life gives you lemons, you paint them gold and sell them to whoever pays the most”. To translate that to non-native speakers (we’re the experts, as Marviq has offices in both Poland and The Netherlands) – you’ve been given a great opportunity and it’s up to you on how you handle it. Just take it easy. It’s very easy to burn out when you’re coding eight hours a day for ten years, so don’t be afraid to mix it up a little sometimes. Do you want to code eight hours a day, but on a beach? You can! (not recommended though, the sand gets everywhere). Maybe don’t even code at all for a day? That’s also possible, by transitioning to the role of a project manager, solution architect or coach!