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I am a fresher working in a software company. I am working on a project all alone. Though I studied CS, I dont seem to grasp things (concepts, code, etc.) easily. Most of what I read is forgotten!!!!:(:(

I want to improve but it seems like there are too many things to learn and there's less time... One more factor is that I am handling a project on my own which adds to my tension, when things don't work and my mind is unable to troubleshoot or look for alternatives...

Also, I can't go to others for doubts as they are busy with their work and they don't know about my app... It's really stressing me out... I have to do everything on my own. I feel bad at the end of the day since I don't meet the expectations of my peers as well as myself...

How do I improve myself and handle things effectively? Suggest to me books on not just coding but also on designing. Also how can I effciently manage my work as well as practice more to get the concepts more clearer?

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3 Answers 3

Talk to your superior and explain the situation. It is in his direct interest to ensure you do your best and he needs to know this as soon as possible.

You will most likely find that it has been expected that you as a fresher may not be familiar with all these things and may require some help to get things straight, but that it is not known what help you will require.

At the very least say you cannot manage the project on your own as it is right now.

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+1 it is never bad to ask for help (especially as an inexperienced beginner), it is always a waste to fail not having asked for help at all. –  Marjan Venema May 22 '11 at 9:55
Wont tellin them I cant do sumthing give a negative impression?? I have heard that never tell you are incapable of doing things to your superiors... –  xoxoxo May 22 '11 at 17:44
@xoxoxo, you got hired, right? If you don't tell them what you can and cannot do, they will fire you when then find out at deadline, and find you knew but didn't tell them. –  user1249 May 22 '11 at 19:12

One of the best techniques for self-management I know is GTD or "Get Things Done", and I think it applies for your case. Get the (audio)book, you might like the opening line where the author says something like: "it is possible to have an overwhelming ammount of things to do and still function productively with a clear head and a positive sense of relaxed control".

In summary, if it is humanly possible to do what you are being asked to do, this organization technique will help you to attack each issue with real actionable to-do lists, which will help you do one thing at a time with a clear vision of where you are going.

The thing about GTD is that it will definitely help you lower your stress levels.

OTOH, if its not humanly possible to do what you are being asked, speak with your manager and ask help to your coworkers regardless (just make your questions more concrete).

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One of the secrets of handling a lot of work is organization. At the end of each day assess the situation and create an outline for the next day (what you want to do and how log each task should take).

This helps in 2 ways:

  1. Following a list of tasks is more effective than figuring out what you should do next and only then try to complete the task.
  2. You can easily determine if you can handle the amount of work or if you need help. For example, if tasks completion has a slow rate, you most likely need some help.

Another tip: always use estimates for each task and try to refine them any chance you get.

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