A couple months ago, I got to hear Alexis Ohanian speak at my college. He was doing a bus tour to promote his book Without Their Permission. For those of you who don’t know, Alexis is one of the co-founders of Reddit. If you don’t know about Reddit and you are on the internet, then you probably have been living under a rock.
So while Alexis was talking, he said something that has resonated with me for a couple months. It’s rare that anyone can say anything that will really stick with me for longer than a couple minutes.
During his talk, he said “Nobody knows what the fuck they are doing”. At first, I was a little confused when I heard this, but after it had sunk in, I started to think about it for a while.
I am currently in my third year of college as a CS major. I feel like I am getting a good grip on programming and what not, but after looking at a lot of requirements for jobs, I get the feeling that I have no idea what I’m doing sometimes. There are just so many things to learn and so many technologies to explore that it’s pretty much impossible to become a master at everything. I’m pretty sure that this can be said for a lot of different fields, not just the tech industry.
As Alexis continued his talk, he discussed the importance of learning things as you go. The point he was getting at was not to be scared to put yourself out there. This can be very scary. I get the impression that a lot of people feel vulnerable when they put themselves out there, as it makes it easy for others to judge them.
It also brings up the important point that if you have a great idea, don’t wait until you learn everything to make it come to life. Instead, start working on that idea and just learn the shit that you need to get your job done.
So what are you waiting for, put yourself out there today and do something that scares you. Bring a change of underwear.