For the last 3 months, I’ve been studying at the Recurse Center. I’ve mostly spent it working on functional programming related things surprisingly, like reading “Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs”, looking through various Haskell resources, reading lambda calculus primers, and so on. Looking back at my batch, I’m quite happy with the work I did. Even though I went into it expecting to do something with databases, and ended up exploring lambda calculus, I was proud oif myself and felt like I had truly grown.
I think that surprisingly the hardest part of RC was the self-directed part. Apart from the first week, there were no mandatory events, and it really was up to you what you wanted to do. Even though there were optional activities to help you keep to a schedule (daily checkins for example), most of your motivation would have to come from yourself. However, I would say that this is both a weakness and a strength of RC. You are ultimately made responsible for yourself, and it can be incredibly challenging to be constantly force yourself to work for 3 months straight when it’s so easy to just slack off and do nothing.
Maybe I’m overexaggerating the challenge, but I think for me at least it was important to go through. I’ve always had trouble with motivating myself, as is evident from my personal struggles with depression. I also have a tendency to isolate myself and hide from the world, but everyone at RC was quite welcoming. Although I wasn’t exactly the most social person at RC, I still managed to make a few friends and I have to say I definitely enjoyed their company :).
Anyways, although I learned a lot of technical stuff at RC, I’m far more grateful for the oppertunity to self-discipline myself, and the supporting community and friends I met. RC was a great experience for me, and I definitely grew as a person from it.