Q: I was hired for an amazing internship and I’m so excited to start. But I’m really nervous too. I want to do well, impress my boss, and look confident. How can I find my chill?
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A: A little nervousness is good, because it tells you that you know this internship is important and that you want to do your best. But we tend to anticipate things and fear the unknown, even if it’s not really that scary in practice. So expect a lot of your nerves to dissipate as soon as you walk through the door, meet your supervisor, or find your desk.
When I started my first internship, I dreaded making a mistake or not knowing how to handle a particular situation. I promise you that you will make a mistake at some point. But so will your boss and so will everyone else. Probably every day. And as for the latter, there’s an easy fix. Just ask questions. Don’t be afraid to. You’re an intern, and no one expects you to know the ins and outs of your position the day that you show up. Asking questions also ensures that you’ll get the most out of your time there.
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You probably applied and interviewed to get this internship. So your supervisors already believe you to be capable of doing the work. So give yourself a break and let go of the idea that you have to be perfect. Just do your best and soak up all the experience you can.
If you need advice, ask your question in the comments, and it may be featured in an upcoming column.