While there are many things I wish I knew at the beginning of my internship, I believe that is the point of an internship: to learn the things that you had no idea you even needed to learn. I feel that internships, specifically this one, shed light on what it is actually like to be in a specific industry, meaning that prior to being on the inside, there are many things that you simply cannot know.
If I could go back in time and tell Past Danielle some of my newfound knowledge, I would tell her that…
- Not everything is as it seems
- You can expect to put hours of work into a single yoga workshop, even one that might only last 30 minutes
- Planning a yoga retreat is incredibly fun but also rather taxing
- There is about 50x more logistical work, organization, and communication that goes into the business of yoga than I ever could have known
- Sadly, obscene amounts of computer work is also part of the wonderful world of the fitness and mind/body industry
- And, yes, even supervisors can bicker and have bad, down days
- Do not expect structure when entering a small start-up style business, especially one led by 2 free-spirited yoga teachers
- For instance, you might have to teach them what Google Drive is and how it can benefit the team
- Then, you might have to continually show them how to use it, along with other supporting systems
- As for email organization, throw that out the window… know that it will be entirely your job to maintain the communication with everyone at all times as well as control the spam influx fostered by the others
- However, with this lack of structure will come some incredible perks, including but not limited to:
- Flexible hours, fun trips all around the state, lots of outside time, working anywhere you want (due to the lack of an office), tons of outside time and play, even while working, and so so much more
- Finally, SPEAK UP!
- Ask for what you need when you need it
- Make sure you voice your ideas, for they can save time and money
- Take initiative to start your own projects
- Do not let fear stop you from putting yourself out there
All in all, I think I knew most of these things coming into this internship. However, this environment brought out subtleties to these seemingly cliche banalities that I never could have anticipated. I wish that I had taught more classes on my own, using the business as a platform for my own teaching. I also wish that I did not take on as much as I did at times. It is easy to lose yourself when you make your own hours. I easily was working 35 hours a week, which I did not expect. Much of this time was spent doing computer work, though there were often late nights teaching classes and doing AcroYoga Jams. These Jams could go until 11pm, not including the drive home. At times this was hard, but ultimately I was so so thankful to have a job this summer that so heavily incorporates and genuinely encourages play.