Shouldn't that be a long term goal?
It sort of comes with the vocation, right?
I'm hoping that the following list would help and/or inspire you somehow.
So here goes...
1. "Do it right the first time"
Always remember this whenever you build something - especially for big projects. I know there are several approach on how to build or solve something, but what it really means is you should try to give your best (as long as you can), or if you have no idea what is the best approach, research and don't be afraid to ASK!
Of course there is "no perfect" program and bugs are always expected; but if you managed to minimize the anomalies in your codes, it would save you a lot of time and unnecessary headaches in the long run.
2. Think ahead
This supplements tip #1 - you have to visualize the end product and the ways and tools to achieve it. Also, create the project in a flexible way wherein code modifications are easy to incorporate.
3. Read on and read good
I know it's boring and strenuous to read manuals, tutorials, ebooks etc etc, but trust me you will benefit from the long hours and efforts you spent on that ass-flattening thick book.
Aside from the supplements mentioned above, you should take advantage of the source codes that are freely distributed on the internet, such us, joomla, drupal, wordpress and many more. Download the packages and scrutinize the culture, style and art on how the system was built.
4. Breakdown that complicated process
It's normal to be overwhelmed by a complicated process, the next thing you should do is to analyze and disintegrate the process into smaller functions, and work on it one by one. I bet by then it wouldn't be that much scary.
5. Programming is in the heart
Like what they say, "Many are called, few are chosen", what would really make you stay and strive to become better at this profession, is your passion and patience, and most of the time, in my case, a kick-ass background music.
6. Practice and evolve *repeat until fade*
Unlike other occupations, software engineering evolves at a much faster pace, there's always something new on how to build and execute digital operations, in just a matter of months.
Warning: Slackers would be terribly punished.
7. Self-criticize your work
I believe that from time to time you should interact with other programmers and have them check your codes, I believe that if the other programmer is not a douche, he/she would teach you on how to do a certain process faster, and that my friend would save you a lot of time. Remember, there's someone who's always better than you at something.
8. Be lazy in a smart way
In reality this means you should practice reusing your codes and improve ways to "shorten" the lines of your codes while having the same or better output.
Write your functions in a good way so next time you would be spending less time on creating similar projects.
That's all code warrior, cheers!