Today’s a new day. Just like any other, but what makes today somewhat unique is that I’m writing a blog post on it. I spent the last few years working on myself and my career. I told myself that sooner or later I’d start blogging about it, and I guess today is both sooner and later – go figure.
This year I got a great job working for a military contractor in IT. Thanks to this new company I’m with, I got my CompTIA Security+ certification, and I’m working toward some more certifications in the same vein. CEH, CSSLP, etc. I’ve been getting straight A’s at my local community college for about a year now and I was just accepted to the Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree program at Western Governor’s University, starting on 10/1/19. After many years of never doing very well in school and moving from one disappointing position to another, everything has changed for the better all in just the last year or two.
Journaling and Writing
What I’m most proud of and what’s helped me progress the most is the habit of regularly journaling. In total now I’ve created well over 300 pages worth of journal entries, both personal and CS research related. Nearly every day I write about the stuff I’m interested in as I learn more about them. I write about the things that are going on with me in my life. I organize my thoughts, I express anything that’s troubling me, and all else. It’s been a fantastic way to bring my thoughts out of my head and organize them coherently. Now that I’ve been doing this, I’m twice as productive and three times more organized now than I ever was in my life. I’m honestly very surprised that more people I know don’t do the same sort of thing, but maybe it’s not for everyone. Either way, I highly recommend that you try… it could change your life.
Break Up and Socializing More
Today I just broke up with my girlfriend after dating for almost a year. That absolutely sucked, but I’m working through it. To counterbalance that, I’ve been trying to put more effort toward spending time with my friends and being more social – it’s hard for me because I’ve lost touch with a lot of my old friends. Nowadays I’d rather just work on code and stay home most of the time, but I’m definitely committed to changing for the better in that regard. I need to get out there more and being a good friend to the people I know!
Motivational and Self-Help Books
Over the last few months, I’ve listened to five books and I recommend them all to those who might be struggling with getting their life going, getting away from toxic attitudes, or just improving themselves:
- Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out Of Your Head and Into Your Life by Gary John Bishop
- The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
- 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
- Unlimited Memory: How to Use Advanced Learning Strategies to Learn Faster, Remember More and Be More Productive by Kevin Horsley
- Dark Psychology Secrets & The Art of Reading People by Richard Martinez
Every day I’d just load one of these books into Audible on my phone for my commutes to and from work and school, concentrate on what was being explained… rewinding and repeating sections that I needed to focus on… and steadily I got through them. When I’m at home and I have a free moment, I open one of them up and read where the audiobook left off – or investigate the sections I didn’t fully absorb while listening.
Working Toward Helping Others
I’m finding that a lot of people I care about struggle one way or another. Things like launching their ideas and working toward their dreams, or finding happiness in their routines and the people around them. A lot of people hold on to the past, dwell and soak in the negative, or simply just don’t put the effort into themselves to be able to rise above what weighs them down or discourages them. I hope that as time goes on I can work to be of assistance to them, or inspiration for people that can’t find a way on their own. Fortunately, I’ve gotten to a point where I’ve come to grips with the things that have bothered me for years, and spreading the sense of freedom I’ve gained from that to help others through the dark would be amazing.
Software and Math Books I’m Working Through
Other, more career-centered, books I’ve gotten recently that I’m studying include:
For learning C++:
Beginning C++17: From Novice to Professional (2018)
Mastering C++: A Step By Step Guide for the Beginner and Advanced User (2019)
Effective Modern C++: 42 Specific Ways to Improve Your Use of C++11 and C++14 (2014)
C++ Concurrency in Action: Practical Multithreading (2012)
Large Scale C++ Software Design (1996)
For getting ready for Machine Learning and AI:
The Hundred-Page Machine Learning Book (2019)
Coding the Matrix: Linear Algebra through Computer Science Applications (2013)
Linear Algebra (2011)
Linear Algebra (1971)
For now, I’ll keep working, a little at a time, toward this greater future I envision. That work includes posting more blogs like this one, adding content to my youtube channel at https://youtube.com/c/WillForbes87, and getting this website off the ground.
So that’s where I’m at. That’s the best introduction I could give to my life right now. Thanks for reading – hit me up any time at linkedin.com/ … stay tuned for more.