Big Things have Small Beginnings – How I Beat 2020

I’ve got well north of a decade of VMware experience and I finally took the the VCP-DCV exam. Much more importantly, this is the third cert I’ve achieved in the last month. The state of the world got me down. I decided I didn’t like that feeling, so I did something about it. I’m embracing hard learning and pushing myself to learn net new technologies while also expanding my current baseline. I’ll get the AWS Certified Solution Architect – Associate cert before October, and a couple more before the end of the year. I’m not quite ready to talk about the last two, but they are going to be significant. Most importantly, I’m feeling good!

Everything happening in the world these days started to get me down a bit starting a few months ago. I decided to embrace change inย my life with things I could affect instead of letting the things that I couldn’t affect get me down. A leader in my organization once brought up the concept of “hard learning”, which is learning things that are outside of your comfort zone. I decided that hard learning is what I’ll embrace in order to get the serotonin boost I’ve been craving.ย 

Anyone that has talked to me about certification is aware that I haven’t placed a lot of value on achieving them in the past, and that I’ve relied on the ability to hit the ground running as proof of competency. What I didn’t think about until recently is that very few people have a certificate AND can hit the ground running. An even smaller group contains people that receive certs that actually have hands on experience with their particular certification area. I aim to be a part of the very small group of people that can hit the ground running, is certified, and has significant experience backing everything up.

Part of the hard learning for me here was realizing that I was wrong about certs. I needed to make them work for me, by studying and ensuring I have actual experience so they are not just a meaningless piece of (digital) paper. The other hard learning part is pushing myself to learn new things. It’s easy to get stuck in your comfort zone. Mario Andretti said, “If everything seems under control, you’re not going fast enough”. In tech, we die on the vine when we are not pushing and innovating ourselves. I’m working hard to apply this principle to myself by learning things that aren’t connected to my current skill set.

Anyhow, that’s all I’ve got right now. Big things have small beginnings. I appreciate you spending the time to read this.

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