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How to Learn Coding If You're Older

Is there a right age to learn to code? I get so many questions about this.

I know a lot of people think that they're too old to learn to code. But this couldn't be further from the truth.

There is absolutely NO age limit when it comes to learning something new. Anything in fact. But especially when it comes to coding. You can absolutely learn how to code in your forties, fifties, sixties, and even seventies.

We have students in our community across all of those age ranges and we could not be prouder. 

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Most of the students in my community are women. Which is also not something you see a lot of in tech. It wasn't all that long ago when we used to hear that careers in tech were just for men.

Although it is still very much a male-dominated industry, it does not mean that women can't learn to code and get into tech. Quite the opposite - and we’re working hard to help close that gap.

But maybe you grew up hearing this sort of talk and got discouraged. Or maybe you just stumbled upon coding and you thought ‘Oh, that looks awesome.’ 

Either way, I'm here to tell you it is not too late and you are not too old to learn how to code.

And if you're a woman wanting to get into tech, awesome. The more the merrier. 

Now, let's go back to the age thing, because there are actually a lot of benefits that you may not think about if you learn to code older than in your twenties. 

The Benefits of Learning to Code When You’re Older

You Have More Experience

When you start at an older age, you probably have a lot more years of experience under your belt. And it doesn't matter what you've been doing for all those years, you can use that experience as an advantage when you are learning to code.

The truth is skills build on each other and nothing goes to waste. Learning to code and learning the tech skills, that's really the easy part.

Whereas the harder part is starting your own business. 

Because starting a business requires a lot of other skills that younger folks probably wouldn't have. So I guarantee you, your life experience will absolutely help out.

You Have Skills That Build With Time And Experience

Maybe you've worked in the education industry, the beauty industry or the medical field for years. 

Here's an example. If you’ve worked in hospitality, you will have customer service experience, which is incredibly important and crucial for running your own business. I cannot even tell you the number of times that I had clients come to me because they'd been ghosted by their last web developer who was younger, and probably didn't have that same life experience.

Just something as simple as responding, replying to emails, just being a good person and a good service provider. Those sorts of skills that you will have gained over time will make you a better service provider and better at offering your tech services.

Life Skills Are Extremely Useful in Business

Now let’s say your journey didn’t take you to any particular industry. Maybe you've stayed home with your kids for years and now you're ready to jump back into the workforce.

Now I reckon you have pretty incredible organization skills and time management skills. 

It really doesn't matter what your journey has been. I guarantee you have experience and skills that will benefit you as you learn to code, learn tech skills and start your own business. 

You Can Combine Skills With Tech

Or maybe you’re looking for a career change at 40. In this case, you could stick to your industry and make that your niche as you offer that tech service. 

I guarantee you every niche will need some sort of tech support. So if you already know that field, that industry, (eg. medical, education, hospitality, etc) then you can take that experience and combine it with your tech skills. That’s what we love to call a unicorn.

All those skills that you have gained over the years will absolutely help you in this journey. And tech skills are so in demand.

If you're worried about younger folks getting the jobs over you, I’m here to tell you - don’t! There are more than enough opportunities out there, so definitely go for it. 

Top Tips To Learn Something New

I know that learning something new, especially tech, can be daunting at any age. I learned in my 30s and it was a scary decision. 

But it was the best decision I made! And those two tips are things that I wish I knew when I started out. It would’ve definitely made my life much easier.

Find a Community

My number one tip for you is to find a community of like-minded folks. People who will be there to support and encourage you as you go through this journey.

I really can't stress this enough. Learning something like how to code and build an online business is a lot harder if you're doing it all by yourself. 

I learned in a vacuum with no support and no encouragement. And as a result, it took me forever to learn to code, and over two years to start my business and start finding clients.

Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

My second biggest tip is don't compare yourself to others. And I know you’ve probably heard this before. But it is SO important to remind yourself constantly.

Everyone is different and everyone's journey is different. Just because someone learned how to code and started their business in X amount of time, that doesn't mean you have to as well. Or that if you don’t, you failed.

Take your time, learn your way, and do what works best for you. The only person you should compare yourself to is yourself from yesterday. 

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I hope this has inspired you to get out there and learn something new and try something different. Whether it's learning how to code, starting your own business or something else. 

And if it did inspire you to learn more about coding, I would LOVE to invite you to our next FREE Live Coding Challenge!

About the Author:
Some people look at the sky and see stars; others see constellations. Some people look at lines of code and see a website; Julia saw a path to empower women in building their dreams. As a (former) military wife, self-taught web developer, and lover of location independence, Julia has taught over 2,400 women to say “YES” to any WordPress request, but not only that, “YES” to themselves, and “YES” to creating life on their own terms. Empowering women and seeing others succeed is the biggest motivator for Julia. And so, she created a program to teach others the skills that allowed her to take back control of her life and start living on her own terms.
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