One of my 2019 goals is to become fluent in data management, retrieval, manipulation, and analysis. This meant I should become proficient in SQL (Structured Query Language) and Python programming. How was I going to do this? Read on and find out!
I knew that learning SQL and Python programming was not going to happen just because I wanted it to. I was going to have to dedicate time and effort to learning the material. On top of working full-time, grad school classes, and creating content on my blog and Instagram, this seemed nearly impossible… until I read this article on Personal Excellence. (Read here)
This article helped me reshape my perspective on my goals. Learning SQL and Python seemed like an unconquerable mountain on top of my other responsibilities, but I was making it out to be a bigger thing than it really is. After reading this article, I broke the big mountain into little hills, which I further broke into smaller plots of terrain. (Okay, okay. I’ll stop with the mountain analogy)
For example, I broke my big goal of learning SQL into smaller goals, including but not limited to the following:
- Learn how to retrieve data
- Learn how to use different types of JOINS and UNIONS
- Learn how to use sub-queries
My sister helped me get started on my goal. She offered to share her subscription to DataCamp, an online learning platform that enables you to learn data science with video tutorials and coding challenges. If you’re interested in learning data science, they also cover R, Python, Statistics, etc.
Next step was dedicating at least 30 minutes of my day on DataCamp watching the video tutorials and completing challenges. 30 minutes. I realized that I waste a lot of time watching YouTube videos and/or TV in general, so I decided to take 30 minutes from those activities and apply them to learning SQL.
By dedicating 30 minutes a day for the past two weeks, I’ve already learned how to efficiently retrieve data and use different types of JOINS, UNIONS and conditioning queries.
All of a sudden, my goal of learning SQL was no longer unconquerable.
If you have a goal you want to achieve in 2019, try breaking it down into smaller tasks and dedicating at least 30 minutes of your day to them. If you can’t take time away from watching TV/YouTube or playing videos or whatever you like to do that isn’t necessarily productive, it may help to rethink what your 2019 goals are.
I hope this post serves as a motivation for you to achieve all your goals in 2019!