Work hard, play hard: 8 tips for beating the mid-internship blues

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Ameena Golding/Staff

We’re basically halfway through the summer (gasp!), and many interns have fallen into the routine of work hard, play … later? Most probably spend the day sitting at desks or going to meetings. It’s easy to get stuck in the routine and lose the motivation and excitement you had at the beginning. Of course, it’s easier said than done, but we at the Clog have a few tips for how to make the most out of the rest of your internship.

1. Coffee, coffee, coffee!

Maybe not the best advice, but seriously, take advantage of the coffee machine in the office. It’s a godsend. While we don’t want anyone too hooked on coffee, it gives the extra boost you need to make it through the morning meetings. You want to be as alert as possible, so treat yourself to a good cup of free joe when you can.

2. Pack a good lunch.

Packing a healthy, filling lunch can make or break your day. Not only does it give you energy, it ensures you won’t obsessively think about how hungry you are throughout the rest of the day. Try to eat lunch with your coworkers too! It’s a fun way to spend the middle of your long workday.

3. Talk to some new people.

It’s easy to stay in your corner of the office. But your summer internship is an exciting time when you get to work at a cool place you might not get to go back to! Take the opportunity to get to know the intelligent people around you. They may have been in your spot a few years ago, so they could have some wise words of advice for you —not to mention you might make some really cool connections.

4. Ask your boss for more work.

We wouldn’t recommend doing this obsessively, but simply asking how you can help could go a long way. It’ll give you something to do, your boss will have less work on their hands and they might start giving you more work once they see you can handle it.

5. With permission from your direct supervisor, help other people out with projects you’re interested in.

Let your supervisor know about the other interests you may have! If they don’t need you 24/7, it would be a great time to help out some other people in the office. You’ll get to know more people and you’ll gain some new skills.

6. Explore the building you’re working in.

During your next lunch break, go explore! You might be in a cool, old building or a shiny new one, but we’re sure there’s some interesting artwork or weird basement somewhere. Just don’t get lost and waste all your time doing so.

7. Make friends with the other interns.

If there are other interns working at the office, befriend them. Get coffee, hang out on the weekends, go to happy hour after work or simply just have lunch! The more friends you have at work, the more meaningful it will become.

8. Don’t just go home and sleep.

It’s hard to not want to pass out on your couch the moment you get home. But allowing yourself to do that just gets you stuck in that same old routine. It’s exhausting, but try to do something other than nap or watch TV after work. We know that summer is meant to be fun, so we don’t want you resenting your job for making you so tired all the time.

Working full time for the first time, or even part time can be extremely tiring. You need to push yourself, build relationships and show your interest in your work to come out with the best experience. You’re not there to just build your resume, you’re there to gain skills and knowledge that will help you to succeed in the future. Even if you’re realizing through your internship that this isn’t the field you want to pursue in the future, use the opportunity to talk to people in the office with jobs you normally wouldn’t consider. We want you to love your internships and have the best summer ever, so break the old, tired routine and get moving!

Contact Sunny Sichi at [email protected].