Due to some personal issue, I can’t/don’t-to work in tech for now but would love to advance as much as I can in my skills so that if/when one day I get to work in tech I can sort of compensate for my lack of experience.
I created a firefox extension 6+ months ago and this week I wanted to add a few things the code was sort of messy so I rewrote it using Classes (it felt such a joy) and it was the first time ever I used classes (OOP). I had followed tutorials a few years back on OOP and Classes but never was able/bothered to understand what a Dog class with eat() method had to do with web apps (I have done a lot of personal apps with functions). Of course, we used classes with react but it felt like jQuery, I never bothered understanding what we were extending from and how those methods worked in the parent class.
I can do MERN. When I want to create a website I just use mongo, express, and react. Since I don’t do it every day, I do have to read a bit of the docs to remind myself, to get in the flow, a lot of the time the react starter app is enough
I get that “you can’t learn on your own what you can learn in the job” . And I’m proof of it, but is there anything I should be doing to … let’s say become a really good hobbyist (regardless of what the future holds)
Improving skills requires exercise. Github is the home of a lot of opportunity, Find a project you would enjoy contributing and become a participate in that projects development. I’m also going to take this opportunity to extend a shameless plug that I believe is directly related to your question. That said I’m the founder/president of a charity currently seeking contributors for missions and initiatives. Most of what is being worked on is Angular and Cloud but React could be used. The primary mission is to reduce global energy consumption by responsible use of technology for a cleaner environment. I’m also in the process of evaluating and preparing for climate change grant submissions to potentially get some funding. If that is something you might be interested in hit me up on pm. I can explain more providing detail on planned initiatives and github links. Everything the charity does is public from the code down to the books.
If learning from courses appeals to you then there are courses here on Sitepoint and many other online courses all that have various price points.
There are a number of sites that also give free tutorials, although this can be a bit of patchwork.
Finally, there are books fro Sitepoint and others that provide introductory start to finish types of processes.
Also reactive programming and RxJs.