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career advice

She slammed me into a telephone pole

​​​​​​​I think about that day a lot.

I was 8. My dad was driving my little brother and I to school. It was foggy and we couldn’t see more than five feet in front of the truck. We came to an intersection with a major highway near where we lived.

I still feel responsible.

Because, my dad asked us:

“Can you guys see anything?”

I said, “No.”

And, he took off across the highway. She was speeding. 65 mph in a 55. She slammed into the side of our S-10 just behind the passenger door where I was sitting… no seatbelt. The impact launched us 30 feet in the air and spun the truck 180 degrees.

We slammed into a telephone pole…

Just in front of the passenger door.

Had either impact been two inches closer to the door…

I’d have died instantly.

But, that’s not what I think about or feel guilty about. It was my dad. When we hit the ground, we were all thrown from the truck. He landed awkwardly and chipped part of his spinal cord. He’s been a paraplegic ever since.

Since moving down closer to my mom and him…

I see him every day.

The struggle just to get out of bed.

Going the bathroom.

Eating.

It’s all an excruciating amount of work.

When I was a kid, I used to think that if I were him, I’d have handled it better. I wouldn’t have “checked out”. I’d have worked my way back to “normal”. I’d have taken care of my kids and my wife.

God, what an arrogant S.O.B. I was.

Next year, I’ll be the same age he was when it happened.

It seems obvious now that I have no idea how I’d handle a situation like that.

But, watching all this taught me something…

Something that drives a lot of the choices I make.

Life can turn in a split-second.

One day, you’ve got it all figured out. The next it all comes crashing down. You can never be prepared enough. That’s why I’m a web developer. It’s why I freelance and run my own business. It’s why I moved to Missouri.

On and on.

I’ll be damned if my kids suffer like I did… no matter what happens.

Point is…

Yes, it’s Monday. Yes, Mondays suck. Yes, it can be easy to just “take a day” and phone it in. Well, let me be your kick in the a!@. Tomorrow ain’t given. It can all go away in a flash. Are you prepared?

Is your life everything you wanted it to be?

Could you look back now without regrets?

If not, suck it up there buttercup.

Don’t fall into the easy “It’s Monday” excuse.

Be better than everybody else.

And, get to crackin’.

You can’t control what the future will bring your way…

But, you CAN control what you do now to be ready for anything.

And, of course, if you want an assist web development-wise, I’ve got a whole curriculum of courses for you to get crackin’ on. HTML, CSS, PHP, MySQL OOP, freelancing and more.

You can get access to it for nothing over on SkillShare.

Details on that here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

So, no excuses bucko!

Time to make it happen.

Later,

John

September 17, 2018

When I die

I’ll never let what happened to my wife… happen to MY kids.

It was such a mess.

Her dad recently passed away and had ZERO planned or prepared for his death. So, instead of focusing on grieving, my wife and her family were scrambling figure out all the details of his funeral and scrounging up the money to pay for it.

And, it’s like I told her…

That’s HIS fault.

If you leave your kids in a bind like that when you die, you failed them.

Matter of fact, after seeing it I had a uncomfortable talk with my own dad.

And, I’ll be damned if I ever let that happen to my kids.

But, it’s more than that.

I don’t just want to “not leave them a mess”.

I want to be able to hand them an “empire”. That’s one of the biggest reasons I run a business and don’t work a regular job. I can’t give my job to my kids. But, my business, I can. It’s why I work at it as hard as I do.

It’s why I learn things I’m not necessarily interested in.

So, I can teach them.

Really, it’s the WHY behind everything I do.

Legacy.

How will I be remembered?

Not just by MY kids…

But by their kids…

And, THEIR kids.

As a father, I feel like it’s MY responsibility.

In any case, if you have or plan on having kids, I recommend taking a moment to take stock. Are you prepared? Will you be able to hand them something of value when you go? How will they remember YOU?

If that vision isn’t 100% what you’d like it to be…

You need to get crackin’!

Because, we never know when that moment might come.

Anyway, if you need an assist with the web development career part that will help you to BUILD all of this, you can get access to my full curriculum of web development training courses for nothing over on SkillShare.

Details on that are here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

But, whatever you do… don’t brush this off.

The older you get, the more you’ll wish you started sooner.

So, get after it.

Later,

John

September 13, 2018

I was 8 feet from death

After yesterday’s email, I had quite a few people ask me to talk about my Army experience more. To be honest, I’ve purposefully NOT done that because it just seemed sort of cliche and banal.

But…

If people are finding it helpful, I’ll give it a try.

Depending on how you respond I may do more.

Anyway, when I was in Iraq, I was stuck on the teeniest of teeny camps. It was 300 yards wide by 1 mile long. For comparison, Camp Victory, which was right next door to us was 20 square miles.

And, in the year I was there, we had 1159 mortar rounds land inside our walls.

If you can imagine a Google map just covered in pins…

That’s what the “mortar map” looked like.

In fact, the camp was nicknamed “Mortaritaville”.

Every square foot of the camp had a mortar round land on it at one time or another. Which, as you can imagine, was terrifying. Every day, you woke up and knew that your walk to the bathroom or shower or chow hall could be your last.

And, there was nothing you could do about it.

Anyway, the closest I ever came to “getting it”, I was just leaving the warehouse I ran while I was there. I got about 20 feet outside the warehouse and the camp sirens started going off.

There happened to be a CONEX box just a few feet away.

So, I dove on the ground and crawled up next to the side of it.

Good damn thing, too.

Because, the mortar rounds started landing just on the other side of it. And, they slowly started walking back closer. The last few rounds hit right next to the other side of the 8 ft. box. I could hear the shrapnel pounding up against it.

I was sure more rounds were coming…

And, were going to land on my head.

But, the biggest mistake you can make is to get up and run.

That’s asking to get hit.

So, I just laid there waiting.

That was my life for the year I was there. But, it taught me something that I’ve used literally every day since… and I credit for the majority of any success I’ve achieved since. And, that’s the ability to endure, be patient and stay focused…

Even when everything around me seems like it’s falling apart.

When I got back and was bouncing from job to job. When I felt like my wife would leave me at any second because I was a loser. When, I started do this coding thing and was terrible at it. Hell, even now, as I’m living and working in the same building while we build our house.

The ability to persist…

And, keep focused…

And, just keep moving forward…

Most of that came from my time in Iraq.

Anyway, I don’t think you necessarily need to go to a war zone to develop that ability, but you do need to KNOW just how important it is. In some ways, it’s everything. Because, no matter what you do… you’ll face adversity.

How will you react?

Cut tail and run?

Or, stick in there and keep grinding.

That’s something only you can answer.

Of course, you don’t need to go it alone when it comes to the adversity you’ll face in building your web development career. That’s what I’m here for and I’ve got a whole curriculum to help you fast-track down that path.

And, you can get access to it for nothing over on SkillShare.

All the details on that are here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

BUT…

Know, there will be challenges, doubts, fears and lots of hard work.

Your ability to PERSIST will determine how far you go.

Later,

John

September 12, 2018

The day that changed my life forever

I still remember it like it was yesterday.

I was working construction at the time. We all suddenly got called back to the office. The first plane had hit and we all sat there around the radio as the second one hit.

Nobody knew what to think or say.

We just sat there horrified and speechless.

Our foreman then sent us all home.

I had already joined the Army in their Delayed Entry Program and was set to start training in six months. I immediately called my recruiter.

“What does this all mean?”

“Will they be having me go to training early?”

“Are we going to war?”

Of course, he had no idea.

Just over a year later, I was in Iraq. In fact, I got there the week of my birthday and basically spent the first three days in a bunker waiting out the mortar attacks.

Here’s the messed up thing.

It was IN Iraq that I really discovered the internet…

Online business…

And, eventually web development.

I often wonder what my life would be like if I’d never went over or never joined the Army or if 9/11 never happened. So, today is always awkward for me.

I’d take it all back in a second.

And yet, I wouldn’t be the person I am today if I did.

Anyway, I don’t have much of a point other than to say… it’s easy to look back on past choices and mistakes with regret and wish you could go back.

But, who knows how that would affect your life?

You wouldn’t be the person you are, today.

And, at the end of the day, we CAN’T go back.

So, all you can do is keep looking forward and keep moving. Eye on the prize… the career and life you want for yourself and the grind to get there.

And, try to enjoy the journey along the way.

Anyway, if you want an assist with your web development career, get no-cost access to my entire curriculum over on SkillShare. All the details on that are here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Later,

John

September 11, 2018

The guy my wife left me for

Thinking about it still makes my stomach churn.

We went to one of her sister’s kids’ baseball games. And, in these small towns, everybody went to school together and nobody ever leaves.

So, you’re always running into someone.

This time it was Josh.

I didn’t take long into the conversation for my insecurities to start flaring up. He was talking about this “amazing” job and all the money he made.

His new 4-bedroom house.

He pointed to his new Chevy truck in the parking lot.

Blah, blah, blah…

“F!@# this guy!”, I kept thinking.

And, as they sat there chatting, my mind started to race. “Look at how she looks at him. She never laughs that much at MY jokes. Why can’t we just f!@#ing leave?”

And, that ball of anxiety…

And anger…

And ultimately sadness…

In my stomach just kept growing.

Later that night, as we argued about money for probably the 100th time that week. I couldn’t help but wonder, “Was she secretly wishing she’d married him and not me?”

I was convinced…

“This is the guy my wife will leave me for.”

Here’s the truth.

It may be the same for women, I don’t know. But, I KNOW for most guys, when you don’t have your career in order… either, you’re still figuring out what you want to do…

Or, you’re working some job you hate…

It makes you feel like less of a man.

We could debate all day if it *should*…

But, it does.

And, when you’re in that place… it infects every part of your life. Especially, your relationships. The conversation my wife had in the park that day…

Is one she’s probably had 100 times since.

It was nothing.

But, because I didn’t have my s!@# together, every little insecurity I had came raging to the surface and I was surprised when she didn’t just shag him right there in the park. That’s how crazy it can get.

Anyway, point is…

Don’t think you can skirt around this. If you KNOW your career isn’t where you want it to be, don’t fool yourself into thinking, you can fudge.

Instead, attack it.

Head on.

And, start pursuing the career and life you really want deep down in the places you don’t tell anybody about. It makes you feel whole.

And, every other part of your life better.

Of course, as an aspiring developer, I’ve got a whole curriculum of courses that help you fast-track that journey. PHP, OOP, HTML, CSS, freelancing and more.

And, you can get started with it for nothing on SkillShare.

All the details on that are here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Later,

John

September 10, 2018

My tech job is killing me

About a month ago I got this message from Scott:

He wanted to get into web development.

And, wanted to know if it was any better.

Fast-forward to today and he just sent me this:

Now, it’s obvious to me what happened.

I get all the notifications. Scott has absolutely tore into his learning. Took my Beginner’s Guide to PHP course. Dove into my Freelancing on Upwork course.

Hired a pro photographer to take his head shot.

Started working on YouTube videos.

Just insane amounts of action.

If he keeps it up, it will be almost impossible for him to lose. Because no matter what happens or how things change, he will grind through it.

And, that’s it.

That’s the “secret”.

Which, of course, is no secret at all.

Combine an insane work ethic…

With the right training…

And, you’re basically unstoppable.

Anyway, if you’re ready to grind like Scott, you can take the exact courses he took here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris. That gets you no-cost access for 2 months.

Grind through all my courses in that 2 months…

Cancel before the 2 months is up…

And, you won’t pay a dime.

Or don’t…

And, keep watching others live the life you wish you had.

Up to you.

Later,

John

September 4, 2018

You’re not smart enough to be a developer

This is one of the big fallacies in our industry.

For me, it was about six months in.

Growing up, I always knew I was pretty smart. School came easy to me. I could always learn new things really quickly. Plus, everybody always told me I was smart.

I just grew up knowing it.

Then, I started learning how to code.

And, it didn’t come easy.

In fact, even when I worked really hard at it, I still didn’t get it. The PHP manual is one I can remember. It’s weird to think about now.

But, it used to confuse the hell outta me.

To be honest, I’d got hired AS a developer…

Before I really, fully “got it”.

Which was scary as hell.

I felt like a complete fraud.

I remember telling myself at one point:

“Maybe, you’re not smart enough to be a developer.”

Then, one day, I was sitting in a hotel room… at a conference with my boss. And, he was asking me some questions about coding and how it worked.

Just general curiosity stuff.

And, for some reason, in that moment…

It clicked.

I can remember it clear as day.

I just suddenly “got it”

And, all this stuff started falling into place in my head.

Thing was, I hadn’t changed. I didn’t suddenly get 10X smarter. My I.Q. was exactly the same as it was before. But, my understanding… was radically different.

And, all it took was one moment…

For everything to click.

And, since I’ve started teaching others how to code, I’ve seen this time and time again. I get the excited emails from people and you can tell it just clicked for them.

Anyway what I’ve learned…

It’s really not about intelligence.

It’s more about persistence.

That “aha” moment comes not from some radical change in your intelligence, but from pushing and clawing and fighting to understand…

From grinding and learning…

And, stuffing as much info in your head as you can.

And, then, one day…

BOOM!

It all just clicks.

It re-orients itself inside your head.

And, it suddenly all makes sense.

So, the thing to do is NOT worry about if you’re smart enough and all those insecurities that can creep up. It’s to just keep working and learning…

And, building toward that moment.

Anyway, I’ve got a whole curriculum of developer training that can help you do that. Over 30 hours of training that you can get access to for nothing.

Details are here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Later,

John

August 27, 2018

Hiring managers are your enemy

And, you shouldn’t ever forget that.

They don’t care about you.

Think about it this way. What do you think a hiring manager is more likely to get “in hot water” from the “highers ups” over?

  1. Not hiring a good employee
  2. Hiring a bad employee

I hope the answer is obvious.

Executives and higher ups will almost never know if a good employee slips through the cracks. And, how do you KNOW for sure they’d be a good employee, anyway?

But, a bad employee.

Well, you see that.

It’s right in your face.

So, most hiring managers (despite all the koombaya crap they’ll feed you) are in CYA (Cover Your Arse) mode. They’re just itching for a reason to disqualify you.

So, when you send off that resume.

Or, go in for that interview.

You are at war with them and their “process”.

A process designed to disqualify you.

I once had a hiring manager tell me that he told the plant manager who wanted me NOT to hire me. But, that plant manager was doing it anyway.

And, the hiring manager hoped things didn’t work out.

So, he could tell the plant manager, “I told you so”.

That’s how adversarial they can be.

Anyway, the trick is confidence. When you know who you are and what you’re capable of, the people interviewing you can sense it.

And, it almost doesn’t even matter what you say.

You’ll just “feel right” to them.

And, can damn near any job you want.

And, of course, confidence comes from competence.

Knowing your s!@#.

So, it all always comes back to your grind.

And, getting to it each and every day…

To make yourself better.

Anyway, my coding curriculum on SkillShare can help you get there. Use this link to get started for nothing: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Later,

John

August 22, 2018

No, you don’t need a degree to get a tech job

A 5-minute look on Indeed…

And, you can find a dozen or more tech jobs…

That DON’T require any kind of degree.

But, I know, I know…

“All the REAL tech jobs require a degree. You ‘script kiddie’ web developers might not, but my uber-genius requiring jobs does, so there.”

Know-it-all says what?

Anyway, here’s the proof you don’t need a degree to get a tech job (plus, several actual non-degree-requiring web developer jobs you can apply to if you want):

Later,

John

August 21, 2018

Any monkey can learn to code

I first talked about this way back in 2013.

In fact, this is exactly what I said:

“But, to be honest, I’ve never really talked much about what it REALLY takes to be successful as a developer. Because, while all that technical mumbo-jumbo is cool… none of it REALLY matters. Yes, you need to know how to do those things… but those things aren’t what MATTER most when it comes to determining the successful from the unsuccessful. Any monkey can learn to code.”

Which… okay.

Touch aggressive maybe.

But, the point stands.

I mentioned this is yesterday’s podcast (johnmorrisshow.com)… 51% of CIO list soft skills as the top skills they want from technology professionals.

In another study by CareerBuilder, 77% of tech companies said soft skills were just as important as hard, tech skills in the employees they’re after.

But, back in 2013…

Man, I took flak for saying that.

Everyone was so wrapped up in tech skills…

Being the end-all, be-all.

Now, five years later…

“Well, duh, that’s obvious”…

Is the common response I get.

So, what happened?

It goes back to what I’ve been telling you. The rapid evolution of our industry has all kinds of side effects. Competition, overwhelm…

And, a loosening focus on hard skills.

Why?

Because, as an industry grows in complexity and the rate of change increases, focusing on any one language, framework, tool or skill…

Becomes sillier and sillier.

Because, five minutes later, something new is out.

(Which, btw, is why the Medium-heads who love to call everyone noobs for not learning the latest “flavor of the week” are so moronic.)

Eventually, what matters is NOT what you know…

But, your ability to learn…

A soft skill.

Your ability to adapt, your work ethic, your dependability, your non-douchiness. What companies need is someone who can thrive in a rapidly-evolving environment.

Not someone who happens to know XYZ language.

Yes, they still ask.

Yes, it still matters.

But, when it comes to who they actually hire…

More and more it’s about those soft skills.

Point is…

As you’re putting all this time into learning HTML and PHP and Node or Go or whatever it is you’re doing… don’t forget to develop a work ethic.

To be honest.

To learn how to communicate effectively.

Those things may well be the thing that get you hired.

(Which, btw again, is why I strongly recommend any new developer freelance for at least a year. There’s maybe no better way to learn all these skills while getting paid.)

Anyhoo, whether it’s hard skills like HTML, CSS, PHP and MYSQL or the soft skills you learn as a freelancer, it’s all in my curriculum on SkillShare.

And, you can get started with it for nothing.

Go here to start the 2-month, no-cost trial.

Take all my courses.

Cancel anytime before the 2 months is up.

And, never pay a penny.

It’s a great way to get the skills you need to get paid to do this developer thing… without handing over your first born to do it.

Anyway, link is here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Later,

John

August 20, 2018

Fake PHP jobs

So, from yesterday…

There’s obviously lots of PHP jobs posted out there.

But, Leon asked this in response to that video:

“How many companies lie about their intentions to hire, to create a false shortage, to argue for more (cheaper) foreign workers?”

I’ll keep it real.

My gut reaction is:

“Who gives a f!@#?”

It’s not ALL of them. I know that. And the only way you’ll really know is to apply. It just feels like an excuse to me. And, that gets my inner grumpy old man outta his chair.

Buuuuuuut.

Let me be civil.

I looked it up. I can’t find any hard numbers on it. I saw one guy said 87%, but didn’t provide a single shred of evidence to back up his claim.

And, that seems like a ridiculous number to me.

So, don’t fall for any numbers anyone might spout off.

Unless they give you some real evidence for it.

But, there’s a really simple way you can tell if a job is fake or not. It’s called their “employment brand”. Think of something like Glassdoor.

Is the company reviewed there?

Or, does it have reviews on Indeed?

Does it have a “what it’s like to work here” on its site?

A company’s employment brand is content, both on and off its own site, that talk about what it’s like to work there, what job openings they have, how to apply…

All that.

If it does, it’s probably legit.

If not, probably not.

And when you find a job posting on one of the 10 different sites I showed you in the video, yesterday, you can take about 5 seconds and google a company before applying.

It’s that easy.

So, don’t let this be an excuse.

If you’re legit worried about it…

Search on Glassdoor, then.

Filter by a company’s star-rating.

And, take 2 seconds a google each company…

Before you take the time to apply.

So, noooow… with that excu– ahem reeeason put firmly to bed, now what’s stopping you from applying to a bunch of PHP jobs, today?

Not ready yet?

Need to shore up your PHP skills?

That’s what my PHP curriculum on SkillShare is for. Over 20 hours of PHP training — beginner to advanced, MySQL, OOP, sessions, cookies, etc, etc.

Link to get started for nothing is here: https://skl.sh/2JhEqT0

Later,

John

August 18, 2018

PHP jobs you can apply for right now

I get a lot of PHP haters who love to drone on about there being no PHP work out there. Or, well-meaning PHP developers who are struggling a bit to find PHP work. Well, this massive list of PHP jobs should cure both:

And, do let me know once you get hired. Gives me ammo for the PHP haters. 🙂

Later,

John

August 17, 2018

Seeking junior developer, 5+ years experience

Wait, what?

This comes from a comment I got on YouTube:

“Today I saw a job post Jr Front End-Developer 5+ years experience Angular 2.  Recruiters make it hard.”

To which I replied:

“Oh geez. Chicken and the egg problem.”

Why does this happen?

Yes, sometimes people are just dumb.

But, you see it more than just to chalk it up to “everyone else, but me, is dumb.” This is what happens when an industry gets more competitive.

The bar starts to raise.

Until you see illogical things start happening.

I mean, how are you supposed to get started as a developer, when the bottom rung requires that you have at least 5 years experience?

It doesn’t make much sense.

But, you see things like this more often than you’d think.

And, more simply, for the person trying to break into this industry it can start to feel like, “What exactly am I supposed to do?”

And, it’ll only get worse.

The industry is only getting more competitive.

And, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that people employed as “software developers” will grow by 30% over the next 10 years.

More people coming in.

More developers to battle with for work.

But, one thing that’s happened that really hurts new developers is this focus on new, exciting and “cutting edge”. You see it in the jobs they pursue.

This quote from Business Insider says it perfectly:

“Find a comfortable niche in a company with steady revenue stream, be good at a really boring but important technology that 21-year-olds wouldn’t touch with a 10-foot pole…

“There are plenty of mediocre, even terrible software engineers working at older [not-secksy] companies that have excellent job security because the new college grads have no desire to work there, and the companies actually make [muney].”

So many developers get caught up in new, new, new.

They gotta work at Facebook or Google.

Or some start-up.

But, there’s so many boring, non-secksy companies out there who desperately need developers, use older more establishes technology…

And, will pay handsomely for the right person.

In fact, about 5 minutes on Indeed and I found a company paying 75-90k for someone who knew HTML, CSS, jQuery, PHP and Bootstrap.

AND, it was a remote job.

So, you gotta work from home.

This stuff is all over out there.

If you just look for it.

So, don’t get so wrapped up in everything having to be new and exciting and ultra “secksy”. These old, boring companies need people like you.

They’re well-established and often more secure.

And, they tend to really appreciate their developers.

That said, if “boring”, “old” PHP is your thang and you need to get your skills right to apply for a job like this, then my PHP curriculum is your ticket.

Over 20 hours of PHP training.

Beginner to advanced.

OOP in PHP.

A blogging application.

Forms, emails, sessions, cookies…

Basically, everything you need.

And, you can get started for nothing. As a teacher on SkillShare, I can give you an exclusive 2-month, no-cost trial. You’ll get FULL access to all my courses.

Plus, 20,000+ others on the site.

Take all the courses you want.

Including my PHP curriculum.

Cancel any time before the 2 months is up.

And, never pay a penny.

It’s a great way to learn what you need to get a job without spending a bunch of benji’s to do it. Anyway, up to you. Link is here if you’re in: https://skl.sh/2JhEqT0

Later,

John

August 16, 2018

I suck at web development

Lack of confidence is incredibly common among web developers. But, not many talk about it. As I’ve said, confidence comes from competence… but how do you motivate yourself it put in the work to be competent when you’re feeling like you just suck at web development? That’s what I explain in this video.

SkillShare 2-Month FREE trial: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

August 15, 2018

The final blow in the language wars

This really is the definitive answer in the language wars.

I mean, people won’t stop battling over it.

But, if you just want the answer… this is it.

Here’s the question I got:

“Do you think there is more job security in Java programming for software as opposed to web development?

“I find web development enjoyable but have been focusing on Java because of concern for this… I’m switching careers from social work. Currently in school for CIS.”

And, Jesse responded with this:

“There is a lot of Java work in large corporate environments – I’ve worked as a consultant in those environments a lot over the years.  Don’t focus on “will Java get me a job” though – learn Java and the fundamentals of software development and then use that knowledge to get the door open.

“Software development is an ever evolving skill and you’ll have to be mutable to be successful. Java is a good place to start though, especially if you want to get into corporate software development. Stick with it, and then when you feel really comfortable with Java and the fundamentals start branching out.  Best of luck in your new endeavor.”

And, this is what I added:

“[Jesse’s answer] really is the answer. Java seems to be big in corporate environments. Node and Go in start-ups. PHP is still pretty dominant in the freelance space. People love to debate which language is better or will get you more work, but it really depends what you’re doing and what sector of the industry YOU want to work in AND, how adaptable you want to be.

“For example, I’ve never wanted to work in a corporate environment or for a start-up, so I’ve never bothered to do much with those languages. And, I’ll live with the consequences. But, if your concern is job security and being able to adapt, learn them all AND focus on learning fundamental programming principles that will help you build reliable software no matter WHAT language you use.”

That’s really all there is to say on it.

Other than, just keep your eye on the industry and the different sectors and look for changes in all this. But, debating this language over that is silly.

They all have their place.

It comes down to what YOU want to do.

No need to debate the mouth-breathers…

In any case, if you wanna add PHP to your tool bag, I’ve got over 22 hours of PHP training waiting for you. Core PHP, OOP, security, MySQL, form building and more.

And, you can get started with it for nothing.

Start your 2-month, no-cost trial of SkillShare here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Get full access to all my courses.

Work through them in that two months.

Cancel any time before the 2 months is up.

And, never pay a penny.

Simple.

But, only if you’re ready to put in the work.

Anyway, link to get started is here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Later,

John

August 10, 2018

Tech jobs will soon be obsolete

Job security is an illusion.

I’ve said this before. But, lemme rap a little more on it, because if you watch trends, it’s becoming more and more obvious, in my 1000% biased mind, that…

Soon, the standard tech job will be mostly obsolete.

Every year, Upwork puts out a “state of freelancing” report where they break down the raw data related to freelancing and independent contracting work.

In 2017, 36% of the U.S. workforce was freelancing.

By 2027, the majority of the U.S. workforce will freelance.

More than that, 54% of the U.S. workforce said they’re not very confident that the work they do will exist 20 years from now. But only 30% are retraining themselves now.

Among those who do freelance…

63% believe a diversified portfolio of clients…

Is more secure than one employer.

And, they’re right.

If you look at Fortune 500 companies, the trends are abysmal. In 1955, the average life expectancy of a Fortune 500 company was 75 years.

Today… it’s 15 years.

90% of startups fail.

Most within the first year.

Point is…

If you’re banking on getting a “good job” with a “big company” or a startup and that being your meal ticket for the next 20-30 years.

That security you feel… is an illusion.

Truth is, those companies go out of business all the time. Startups are even more fleeting. To me, building your OWN thing that YOU control…

Is the only real security you can get.

Yes, it takes a lot of work.

Yes, there are ups and downs.

Yes, clients can be… ahem… “fun”, at times.

But, in my mind, that’s a helluva lot better than fooling yourself into believing you’re set only to have the rug pulled out from underneath you when you least expect it.

Plus, you set your own hours.

Only work on the things YOU want to.

Charge what YOU want.

Take time off when you want.

Instead of being beholden to some “tech-brooo” CEO.

At least, that’s how it is when you master the art of “client-getting”. But, so many developers and freelancers, in general, struggle with this.

I’ve noticed it’s kind of a desperate mindset.

Almost begging for work.

Like the weird guy at the bar…

Just standing there…

Hoping some hot girl just falls in his lap.

You compare that with the people who understand attraction and how to get clients to chase them… and it’s a totally different mindset.

They’re the picky ones.

They qualify the client…

Not the other way around.

There’s ZERO desperation.

Anyway, I was fortunate enough to get thrown into the fire of face-to-face sales when I was 20. And, had a mentor who taught me everything he knew.

And then, apply that to my own freelancing.

And, the big secret is…

Sales is a process.

It’s not some magical thing that you’re either “born with” or you’re not. Sure, some people are more naturally outgoing than others and that can help.

But, I’m 100% an introvert…

And, I kicked the pants off some of those guys…

When, I did face-to-face sales.

All because I was dogged about the process.

And, the best part for developers… is we’re naturally linear, process-oriented thinkers. So, when we “get” a process… boy can we run that s!@#.

So, you can get damn good at it.

In any case, this is what I teach you in my Freelancing on Upwork course. It’s more than just Upwork. It’s fundamental sales skills applied to freelancing.

And yes, it’s working for people right now, like this:

“John’s class is fantastic! It’s a thorough look into what’s required to build a strong profile in Upwork. It also covers making pitches, asking for the sale, and building trust with your potential clients. If you’re serious about building a freelancing career with Upwork and are willing to put in the work to put together a quality profile, John will give you what you need. Thank you John!” — Daegan Stuart

“A must for those who want to embark on home based jobs.” — Ma. Rosella N Remigio

“I got immediate results… from a client the first day i changed a few things applying the tips he gives.” — Lona t.

So, obviously, this stuff works.

And, you can get started with the course for nothing on SkillShare. As a teacher, I can give you a 2-month, no-cost trial. You can take the FULL course in that time.

Cancel any time before the 2 months is up.

And, never pay a penny.

I don’t know, seems like it’s worth a shot.

But, up to you.
 
Just beware…

This isn’t some magic “trick” that suddenly makes everything better. It takes work. It takes some thinking and researching. It takes “want-to”.

So, if you’re not ready to work…

Don’t enroll.

It’ll be a waste of your time.

Anyway, link is here: https://skl.sh/2OIxQrO

Later,

John

August 9, 2018

Most developers are frauds

I want you to imagine this for a second.

Imagine you’re from a dirty little town of less than 200 people in the middle of nowhere. You can from a dirt poor family that are outcasts in your community.

And, you’re surrounded by rich kids.

Who never miss an opportunity to remind you…

That you don’t belong.

Constantly made fun of. Constantly told you’re a dirty nobody. Constantly told that you’ll never amount to s!@#… so why even try?

Imagine that was your childhood.

Then, fast-forward 10 years and now you’re a developer.. or, at least, trying to be. And, you’re at a conference surrounded by other, more experienced, developers.

The creator of one of WordPress’ most popular plugins.

The lead developer for a popular membership software.

And, dozens of freelancers with way more experience.

And, YOU were asked to speak. To try and tell these people something they don’t know. And, you can feel their eyes burning a hole in you.

It feels like they’re all just screaming “fraud” at you…

With every word that comes out of your mouth.

That was me a few years back.

Point is…

We all feel this kind of impostor syndrome. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been doing it, how much you know… we all feel like frauds, at times.

Especially, when you consider how much things change.

In this industry, there’s always something you don’t know.

And, there ALWAYS will be.

If not knowing something makes you a fraud…

Then, we are ALL frauds.

Of course, then, you have these know-it-alls who happen to learn one of these new things first and love to run around calling everyone else “noobs”…

Because they haven’t learned it, yet.

And, all this can make you feel insecure.

And, overwhelm and frustrate you.

Like, “What the f!@# is the point?”

But, here’s the thing. When it comes down to it, this is all just “noise”. What it really comes down to, no matter what you do in life, is a battle with yourself.

Confidence isn’t some magic thing.

Confidence comes from competence.

And then, owning that competence.

That doesn’t mean you know everything… or need to know everything. It means you know what you know and you put your heart and soul into it.

You become a badass at that ONE thing.

And, you KNOW you’re a badass at it.

And, you OWN that you’re a badass at it.

Everyone and everything else be damned.

That’s the way out.

But, it all starts with competence. And, competence comes from putting in the work. And, when you do put in the work, you know who and what you are.

And, all the chirping from these know-it-alls…

All the fears about all the changes in our industry…

It all just fades away.

Sooooo…

Get to work.

That’s the big “secret”.

That said, I’ve got a whole curriculum for you to build that competence when it comes to PHP, OOP, Security, HTML, Freelancing and more.

If you’re ready to get down business…

And, put in the work.

There’s over 30 hours of training waiting for you.

And, you can get started for nothing here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris.

I’ll be waiting.

Later,

John

August 8, 2018

Why is PHP still being used to create websites?

This was pretty epic.

A real drop-the-mic-er.

It was this answer on Quora I saw the other day from Vakrokh. The question was:

“Why is PHP still being used to create new websites? Why aren’t all new sites using more modern frameworks such as Django or Rails.”

I love how these guys just throw “modern” in there.

As if “modern” automatically equals “better”.

Anyway, here was Vahrokh’s answer:

“PHP is not still being used. ‘Still’ is a word suitable to 2012 PHP, when it has been under an heavy rework and to end users / programmers it looked like it was being neglected and forgotten.

Since 2014 we have PHP 7 (currently, PHP 7.2). PHP 7+ has a massive number of modern features that easily put it on par with Python / Ruby if not above. Interfaces, closures, traits, iterators, containers, exceptions, async programming, websockets (and much more) put PHP back in the competition.

Modern PHP frameworks (Laravel being the most famous, but there are dozens) easily compete with other languages.

Furthermore, PHP 7 brought in something that missed in PHP 5.x: speed and low memory consumption. PHP 7 speed is 100% faster than PHP 5.x and PHP 7.2 is 105% faster than PHP 5.x. The same web request that takes 80 MB RAM on PHP 5.x, takes about 7 MB RAM on PHP 7.2.

A massive saving!

PHP 7 even beats Facebook’s ‘native compiler’ in several tasks. This translates into reduced hosting and upgrade costs. We are talking about the language that could be hosted the cheapest of all, now getting cheaper.

I won’t cover PHP MVC frameworks because there’s copious literature about them. Let’s say there is a flavour for everyone: from the fully featured Laravel and Symfony (that easily compete with Django and Ruby On Rails) to API / backend optimized frameworks, to ‘beginners frameworks’ and mini / micro frameworks.

Last but not least, you can find and hire PHP developer everywhere and their wages are competitive.

All of the above, show how and why PHP is still a widely common choice for new projects.”

Boom!

And, here’s the other thing. In this tornado of new stuff coming out all the time, PHP has been a kind of calm at the center of that storm.

Steadily moving along.

Making the necessary adaptations.

And, still powering 80%+ of the web.

Plenty of work to be had.

(Unless you’re a blue-haired, latte-sipper who “like, OMG, has to work in NYC or L.A. for like a rad start-up. And, PHP is like… ugh… dirty. Gah!”)

If all that chaos has you overwhelmed and terrified of the future, you can simply and calmly just step out of it. PHP is one great way to do that.

That and learning programming principles…

Beyond the languages.

Like object-oriented programming.

Design patterns like MVC.

Security.

Hell, even something simple like proper form-building.

That’s the stuff to learn. The “eye” at the center of a constantly-changing industry that can give you some peace of mind, security and some confidence.

Anyway, let me not blabbeth longer.

Fist bump for Vahrokh.

And, if you want to learn those core languages and programming principles, then check out my PHP curriculum on SkillShare. Everything I mentioned above is in there for the taking.

Link is here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Later,

John

August 7, 2018

All the web development you’ve learned will be obsolete in a year

You ever watch the movie, Twister?

There’s a scene at the end where they’re trapped in this small shed, tied to some pipes as a Tornado rolls right over them, tearing the shed to pieces.

Debris everywhere.

Legs flying in the air.

Complete chaos.

But, there’s a moment where, Helen Hunt, one of the main characters, can see all the way to the top of the tornado. And, it’s nice calm, blue sky.

Almost peaceful.

That’s sometimes how I feel.

As I’ve talked about… all the chaos and change coming so rapidly in our industry. There’s so much to learn and so little time to learn it.

Have I learned enough?

Won’t it all be obsolete in a year, anyway?

How do I keep up?

It can feel like a tornado swirling around you.

But, there is a way to find the “eye” of that storm. The calm, almost peaceful place where you feel confident, secure and excited.

Tom on Quora said it perfectly:

“[Web development] is difficult, sure, and the technology is an always moving target as the frameworks change so rapidly. But fundamentals of design and engineering don’t change. So I didn’t have anything to fear regarding that, it was a matter of learning how to apply those using the flavor of the day.”

It’s easy to get caught in the chaos…

When you focus too much on the “flavor of the day”.

The latest “ermagerd” framework.

Or, shiny, new language.

And, you believe the Medium-heads that say you “have to learn every single one or you’re like a total noob and will never get any work”… blah, blah, blah.

No.

Focus on fundamentals.

And, you’ll be fine.

Another thing that’s true, but unpopular to say, is that despite all dire predictions to the contrary, the core stack for a web developer hasn’t changed much.

The most used languages for websites are still:

HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP and MySQL.

I know… BLASPHEMY!

But, it’s just statistical fact.

All these new languages and frameworks are great.

Node, Angular, React, Go, etc.

In fact, do learn them, at some point.

But, the majority of websites still run plain, old, vanilla, boring (read: calm and peaceful) HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and MySQL.

So, learn those first.

And, frankly, if you’d just stuck with those all this time…

The chaos wouldn’t really have bothered you much.

In any case, do what you want. I’m gonna sit over here in the blue sky, sippin’ my rum and coke… taking all the work the Mediums-heads are “too good” for.

If you wanna chase tornadoes, it’s all yours.

Of course, if you are like me, then my coding curriculum is exactly what you need to learn that core stack. PHP, MySQL, OOP, HTML, CSS, JS… it’s all in there.

And, you can get started for nothing.

All the deets on that are here: https://www.skillshare.com/r/user/johnmorris

Later,

John

August 6, 2018

What’s your biggest fear about becoming a web developer?

Serious question.

I made it into a Quora question, I’m asking you to answer: http://qr.ae/TUIJa1. Please answer it over there and not in a comment.

I’m building this as a resource I can point people to.

Because, I get a lot of this kind of stuff.

And, I want to show people they’re not alone.

Appreciate it.

Later,

John

August 5, 2018