As hard as it can be to admit, there are thousands of people in the world who are just like me. They're aiming for the same goals, they're applying for the same jobs, they're living a similar life. I'm just a single person in this vast crowd. I'm inherently un-special.

So what has allowed me to succeed? I've somehow managed to get hired at the best companies in their respective industries. I've accumulated a highly desireable set of skills in engineering and product management. I get paid well enough to live the life I want.

I think - and I recognize that this sounds conceited - but I think that it is my willingness to do a little something extra that most others aren't willing to do. I'll spend time learning how to code at night instead of watching a TV show. I'll offer to head up a new project at work to get some skills I need. I'll put up not just one but two pull requests to get more eyes on my job application (this worked at PostHog, FWIW).

Yet another part of me whispers that my inherent privilege has allowed me to do extra. I've never had to work two jobs to support an extended family. My parents paid for my education. I've always had the means to buy a computer that I can use to learn to code.

I think both might be correct. All I can do about my privilege is recognize it. But there's a lot I can do about the former - my willingness to do extra.

So here's my advice, on the off-chance that you came here to get some privileged advice from a random stranger: Do extra. It's worth the effort.