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Solve one problem before proceeding to work on another. For the love of cookies - I've seen people who create ten new errors when they fail to solve the first error, then move on to another error hoping to make up for it. Just like how you make sure your program is runnable/compilable throughout the coding progress, it is important to make sure you don't have major, fatal errors in life which you have been ignoring, all the while working on smaller issues.
Good question. I would say that one of the most important thing is to be able to write down your ideas with clear sentences. I mean if you feel unclear, you can't make a understable of your project, just keep develop your idea before start.
@Hatsy xD that is full of experience feeling! The meaning of it is... take your time to build a good code is better than run to pass the finish line. Code is like fundations of a house, if not stable everything will become a mountain of patchs and thats the most painfull way to code.