Leetcode and onset depression

Autodesk prexitonic
Feb 11 35 Comments

Have been trying Leetcode, codewars, hacker rank for months now. And I am ashamed to admit that I am failing pretty hard. Sure some things work out but I find that I am unable to do most of the medium level problems. I can’t quite wrap my head around what the questions are asking for. It’s like they are written in the worst way possible (at least for me). Does anyone else struggle with this?

Looking for honest answers if possible, I am really having a hard time.

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TOP 35 Comments
  • Microsoft gggoggog
    Tc
    Feb 113
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      No. I want to focus on the practice of getting better. I would prefer the conversation not devolve into how much or how little people are making.
      Feb 11
    • Twitch gachiBASS
      you came to the wrong place buddy
      Feb 11
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      Entirely possible, but I wanted to give it a shot since it seems like the people who could give advice are definitely readily available here. So you know, I’m risking it.
      Feb 11
  • RingCentral
    Duck-Bezos

    RingCentral

    PRE
    Yahoo, Oath
    BIO
    One life to live!
    Duck-Bezosmore
    Don’t worry if you are struggling. Try this: look at the solution and try understanding it. Use a pen and paper first.

    Remember you are not the only one struggling. Many people are. It took me 1.5 years to really understand the easiest problems. May be I wasn’t ready the first time.

    Leetcode and chilll!
    Feb 110
  • MathWorks uyG5et
    I will be honest here. Your brain may not be compatible with leetcode style questions. Everyone on Blind says that spending a few months on LC and you should have no problems with DS&A. The truth is, there are many people who would never be able to understand certain concepts at the level required for tough interviews, regardless of time spent. If not why doesn't everyone spend a year studying and get a job at FAANG paying 300k TC? Because they can't. So it's a real possibility that you may not be ever able to solve those problems easily. You need to take a real hard look at the commitments you have made so far and think whether it is a matter of approach, dedication, or you simply not being cut out for these types of questions. If it's the former two, change the approach and/or dump more hours. If you don't think it's the former two, you can either play the numbers game and try interviewing at like 30 companies in the hopes of landing an offer, or interview at companies that don't focus on leetcode style interviews.

    By the way, isn't Autodesk a good company? Maybe don't stress out too much and take a step away from Blind. It's an interesting community but at the same time very toxic and bad for your mental health.
    Feb 111
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      I understand what you mean here. I am definitely a person to look very closely at the things I think I am weakest at and asses if I can improve and how much effort it might take. It has served me quite well so far. For the leetcode stuff, I have no issue solving difficult problems. I usually enjoy solving difficult problems but it mostly comes down to the time it takes to solve them or understand what is being asked. Assuming I understand an interview question I can talk through my thought process and go over why I would make one decision over another, but I find that also writing the code to go along with that is not something I can get done in the amount of time given.

      I tend to think and write notes when I encounter a new problem. Talking through my process slows me down by 3x or 4x so that eats up time. Writing code and talking will slow me down even further so getting 20 minutes to solve a problem lands me in the position of having a well thought out solution with half completed code.

      So I guess I have been using leetcode to help me deal with the time boundaries of interviews. I am just coming to accept that the way I work best is not at all compatible with the interview process.

      As for Autodesk being a good company, don’t take this the wrong way, but 🤣😂🤣😄😆😅.

      Ok that’s not fair. It’s probably a great company for others, but personally it is pretty awful. You have zero input into things you are just expected to close tickets and move on to the next. Asking for context of work or pointing out things that just are not going to work out well is not something that goes well for the messenger. Again my completely biased opinion based on my experience.
      Feb 11
  • Capital One XXsw47
    Have you tried sorting by problem type? That helped for me to practice specific techniques per problem type ie. sliding window for arrays.
    Feb 111
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      Yeah. I have done this a bunch I guess it’s just highly depressing to feel as if I have been making no progress in the close to 1 year that I have dedicated to practicing consistently.

      I also do a lot of Udemy and Lynda courses on the parts of programming and languages that I am weak in. Along with trying to read reputable tech blogs. I am putting in a lot of effort because I really do want to get better at what I do.
      Feb 11
  • New V73cjdk
    Honestly, you won’t get any answer helpful here because you know everything. I would suggest take a break, find out where you are failing, write all the onsite/interview questions on a single doc. Failing in life is a part, Deloitte’s current CEO was failed in his first attempt to Deloitte. I’m pretty sure you have very good basics, just keep practicing.
    Feb 110
  • Amazon NoFap
    Maybe you need to do a course on Data Structure and Algorithms before you attempt to practice those questions.
    Feb 112
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      I’ve been going through these courses. I try to take them slowly so I really understand what’s going on. I have also been using the Cracking the Coding Interview book. Along with just generally reading up on data structures and algorithms. Part of me wants to just stop all of it and do the MIT open course classes on data structures and see how that works out.
      Feb 11
    • Salesforce zeefiddy
      As someone who was in similar shoes as you - you might want to focus a bit more on the ocw classes and lesser on the problems . Yes its more time consuming but I'm the pay off is better in the long term. Leetcode does not teach algorithmic thinking but is more about just the application of it.
      Feb 11
  • Juniper jDGN45
    Start CTCI book (good for strong foundation) before moving on to leetcode
    Feb 111
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      Mentioned in another reply I have been going through that book. I read through Programming Pearls before that.
      Feb 11
  • Microsoft gggoggog
    Wtf this guy did everything people suggested.
    Feb 111
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      I’ve been trying really really hard, is that a bad thing? I like that people are suggesting stuff. Just because I might have tried it doesn’t mean I won’t go back and make a more focused effort if others suggest something. Also never said I was a guy.
      Feb 11
  • eBay / Engkhhgf
    If you don't get a problem, never try to look into someone's code to understand it. That is the best way to lower your confidence.
    Feb 111
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      I have discovered this mostly through work experience. Whenever I ask someone about some code I have no exposure to and that has no significant or meaningful comments and they say the code is the documentation I have learned to push back pretty hard. Reading through line after line of code is doable, but time is valuable and it’s dumb to waste it that way if it isn’t necessary
      Feb 11
  • Intel KTPu74
    Since you have tried every, here is one more thing. Use pen and paper and write the pseudo code for a problem. What steps you have to take to solve. Don’t worry about writing code at this point, can you get the idea right.

    Stopping here will mean you fail every interview. But you can’t go any further if you can’t get the algo clear in your head. The next step is to convert that idea into code. This is mostly just translating and you will get there with practice.
    Feb 110
  • VMware theuser01
    Do you struggle with any specific DS/Algorithm problems or everything in general? If latter, probably start with lowest level mediums (arrays, then strings and so on) and see how you progress?
    Feb 112
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      I think a huge part of it comes down to not really understanding what in the he🏒🏒 some of the questions are asking for. They are like word salad. So from there it’s difficult to separate if it’s the actual problem that I don’t understand or if I am lost because of how the problem was stated.
      Feb 11
    • Salesforce zeefiddy
      Yeah a lot of the questions are badly worded. One thing I do if I can't understand the question is - to supply test cases and see how the code is expected to behave . You'll need to have a compilable stub but this helps you get a better understanding of the question . And it's not looking at the solution too quickly either.
      Feb 11
  • Hubspot hebtidhevh
    Do all the easier problems first
    Feb 112
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      I’ve done a huge number of them and continue to do so. It’s just the very hard barrier that comes with moving up to the harder problems and that has remained virtually the same for months. I’d say at least 6, that’s where the sense of failure comes from.

      It makes everyone else seem like some sort of god damn wizard, and I’m just over here failing to tie my laces.
      Feb 11
    • Foursquare / Engakerka
      There is no end to coding difficulty, and it's not all about coding, find a company that values you as a person instead
      Feb 11
  • Micro Focus / EngYeezus2
    It seems to me that you’re spending a lot of time doing random problems and not actually interviewing. I’ve done like less than 20 leetcode easy problems and had to look at solutions for about half because I didn’t know how to solve them. But I’m still getting through to various onsites because at this point I’ve done so many interviews there are very clear patterns and similarities between what all the companies are asking, and I’ve narrowed my focus on studying the algorithms and data structures that are most likely to come up. You can do 50 random problems on leetcode and get absolutely nowhere or do 50 phone screens and know EXACTLY what you need to work on because you’ll see they all basically ask the same types of questions. If you’re already interviewing then disregard this advice.
    Feb 111
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      I am already interviewing as well, but I can’t say I disagree with the advice. It’s not a comfortable thing to hear but I also have to take into account the possibility that I am just not as good at what I do as I would like to be. So I basically will take any obviously thought through or effective advice to get better.
      Feb 11
  • Amazon amazole
    Have you tried personal one to one coaching with a tutor? It could be expensive but worth it.
    Feb 111
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      Too many bills and other financial responsibilities to go that route at the moment, but it’s definitely something I will look into for the near future if possible.
      Feb 11
  • Microsoft @at
    A lot of them are poorly written. Just skip them or read the discussion to understand what the question is actually asking.
    Feb 111
    • Autodesk prexitonic
      OP
      I really thought it was just me. I read a lot just because I enjoy it and would like to believe my reading comprehension is pretty solid but some of the problems seem like they were written by someone going through a manic episode.

      Not trying to make fun of bipolar folks. It is just the most appropriate analogy I can think of at the moment to get my point across.
      Feb 11
  • Cerner Czfx65
    Try interviewcamp.io . It is worth it $249
    Feb 110
  • New bh64b
    Just trust the process do a little everyday and only do problems your not good at by topic. I used to suuuuuck at algos but now been clearing interviews like nobodies business. Its going to take awhile and be a lot of hard work and your consistently going to doubt yourself but if you practice hard for the battle you'll win the war. For what its worth alot of people are not good at algos there a game you get better with through massive amounts of effort.
    Feb 110
  • New ktFx33
    Focus on easy and do more. It’s about quantity
    Feb 110

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