I made a big mistake.
There are many avenues to success and every journey is unique. When I set my sights on becoming a software engineer, I was single-mindedly obsessed with becoming the best programmer I could be. Then, I made a mistake. I gave no thought to career progression. Whether you're a programmer, developer, software engineer, or any of the other permutations of that title, it is important to realize it is the first rung on that ladder.
For the first five years of my career, I didn't even think about it. I was a software engineer. That's what I wanted to be. I made it. I was successful. The harsh reality is that innovative technology is always coming, and one day, you will not be as fast at learning it as someone half your age with twice the ambition.
Because I had not considered a career progression, I did not have a clear target. This tended to derail every performance review. "What do you want to do next?" I wouldn't say I languished, and there are plenty of people that are genuinely happy as software developers. It's important to respect those that are happy as is.
But don't ignore the career progression that is available to you when you begin this journey at your first job.