Fear of the code review

Mat Boyle
2 min readJul 9, 2021


As a programming student, the scariest part of learning is getting my code reviewed. Each time I send my code in for review, its a flood of anxiety. I fear being judged for having sloppy code(Thank God for ESlint to help keep things neat), code thats too long and inefficiant, or having weird logic that no one understands.

I know objectively as a beginner that my code isn’t going to be great, that there will be lots of ways to improve the code to be more efficiant and cleaner. Part of the beginners journey, I feel, is to be prideful that your code works and that through experience you will learn to make it cleaner and more efficiant.

Emotionally, I feel the instant judgment whenever I post code for review. My head fills with the feelings of not being good enough, fear of being mocked for having sloppy code, or being ostracized for breaking an unwritten rule of programming that I have yet to understand. The emotional side makes me want to work on my own and hide, ultimately limiting my growth.

Learning that the programming community is one of the most opening and welcoming should be a big relief to any programming student such as myself. The community is so welcoming to new programmers and wants more people to learn the skill (if they didnt want people to learn why would there be 1000’s of free learning to code resources and people willing to help). Code reviews shouldn’t be feared, anyone who is doing them wants to be helpful and wants to help you grow in your programming path. By working with other we can solve problems faster and ultimately grow faster.

The best thing to solve my anxiety is to know that only people who want to help are the ones who are going to do you code reviews when your learning. They were once begineers too and remember what it was like just starting out. I’m sure they can remember their early programs and getting their first code reviews and probaply had the same fear that I do now.