Dan Kim

Change and happiness

Today I had some time to reflect on the changes I made in the past two months. I came to a simple conclusion: Life isn’t just good. It’s great.

The reason is astoundingly simple. I recognized a part of my life that made me unhappy and changed it. For me that was work.

Work is a huge part of our lives. It consumes (at least) 40% of our non-sleeping hours a week. That’s a lot of time to spend being unhappy.

So I made a drastic change. I quit my job in management and decided to learn to code again. I wanted to build my ideas, not just talk about them. I wanted to surround myself with like-minded people.

Being accepted to The Starter Leaguewas where the positive change started for me. I’ve been encouraged and challenged since day one.

In just six weeks I’ve learned practical coding skills through fun projects – an animated solar system, a weather app using responsive design, and CSS3 for awesome things like creating logos. Outside of class I’ve used those skills to rebuild my personal site.

I’ve also learned about the importance of writing, which is highly encouraged at The Starter League. Problem solving and making real software is immensely fulfilling, and writing helps it sink in. Both aspects have helped me to think more clearly about everything.

Most importantly my life is in order. I’m happier so I’m healthier. I have an amazing, supportive wife. My twin boys are healthy, happy, and learning. I get to see them grow up every day – more than I ever would have if I stayed in my old job.

It may sound corny, but I realize now how important it is to be happy. And it only took me 35 years to figure that out.