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Touch-typing with nine fingers


I had an accident that made me lose control of my left ring finger. Though I still have it, but I can’t flex it hence, I support it with another finger. I really did not care much that I lost a finger until when I wanted to learn how to touch type.

As a software developer, a very good skill one needs to possess is the ability to touch type. You can read about the importance of touch typing as a software developer on this StackExchange post, and if you have more time, you should read this famous Steve Yegge’s post on typing as a software developer.

Last year I decided to learn how to touch type, but I said to myself that I cannot touch type not only because I have nine fingers, but also because most typing tutorials were made for people with ten fingers. You would agree with me that these excuses were genuine enough for anybody like me to give up on touch typing, which was exactly what I did last year.

Fortunately, this January while in training at Andela, one of my trainers (Ifeanyi) spoke to me about touch typing again.

This time I told myself that

If I can believe it, I can achieve it

So I registered on typing.com and started practising touch typing for about 3 hours every day for two weeks.

Since most typing tutorials are meant for ten fingers, I practically had to devise my own method of learning and typing.

Several times I felt like giving up, after all I have a concrete excuse to give, but on each of those times, I told myself that I won’t let self-pity take over me. I reminded myself this Helen Keller quote -

Self-pity is our worst enemy and if we yield to it, we can never do anything wise in this world. - Helen Keller

Now I touch type at 50 words per minute (WPM) per minute on average and can reached 73WPM especially when I am typing a paragraph I am familiar with

I still practise regularly to improve my typing speed.

Morning practice. #touchTyping #developer #typeracer

A video posted by Abimbola (@hisabimbola) on

One key principle I learnt unconsciously was never to set limitations for myself regardless of the situation I find myself.

The only limit is the one you set yourself - Felix Baumgartner

So dear reader, regardless of the situation you find yourself, remember that

If YOU can believe it, YOU can achieve it


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