Feb 11, 2021
When I first realized that this internship would take place mostly online, several thoughts raced through my head. What would my daily interactions with other interns and my managers be like? Would I still be able to be successful working from home most of the time? Would I still be able to make meaningful connections? I knew this internship experience would be different from anything I’ve ever done, and this made me very nervous; however, I quickly learned that every experience in life is what you make of it. If I wanted to be successful and make meaningful connections, I would need to put myself in a position to do so.
The first thing I realized for myself is that mindset is everything. Having a positive outlook vs. a negative one can be the key difference in how you experience things. It’s easy to overthink things sometimes, especially when you have no prior experiences to go off of. The best thing to do is take a deep breath, assess the situation, and think about the good that can come out of the experience. This really helped ease my mind and made me excited for what’s coming next.
Once I’m in the right frame of mind, I look at all I want to accomplish. Establishing meaningful connections with my fellow interns and my managers is very important to me. In order for me to establish these connections, I need to make an effort to reach out. This doesn’t just include reaching out when I have question or a problem, but actually taking time to talk with somebody and get to know them. There were times in the past where I would be hesitant to reach out to others. I would be afraid of bothering them if they were busy with work or I would fear that they may not be interested in talking to me. This is why mindset matters. Instead of considering all of the negative things that could happen as a result of the interaction, I stop, take a deep breath, and look at things from a positive standpoint. If you never reach out, you may possibly be missing out on a lifelong relationship.
Being successful in my work is also very important to me. I knew right at the beginning that working from home would be a unique challenge when completing tasks. Instead of being able to talk to other interns right next to me or walk into a manager’s office like my previous internship, everything is remote for the most part. While this can make it less convenient while working, it is definitely possible to overcome. Just like when reaching out to establish connections, you also need to reach out with the same effort when you have questions or need help with something. The worst thing you can do is sit by yourself and struggle in silence. Not only is reaching out for help recommended, it is also highly encouraged. Many of the managers I have spoken with were very helpful, offered me assistance and made me feel comfortable to reach out with anything.
With that being said, please make sure to take care of yourself as well. Some days are definitely going to be more stressful than others. Take a second to breathe, stretch and even get some fresh air if you need to. Working from home has taught me the importance of taking a second for yourself and realizing how important mental health is. Also never be afraid to reach out to others if something’s on your mind. Don’t internalize everything. Have a positive outlook, enjoy your experiences and please don’t panic.