A certain sense of routine has set in. When I miss an early morning alarm, I instinctively know how much time I have left until my bus arrives for my commute to the office. After I sit down in my chair, I set to the tasks outlined to me at the weekly Monday meeting I have with my supervisor. Each week the internship has presented a new challenge for me. Without the wide-eyed novelty of the experience to distract me, there is a constant pressure to make the internship “mean something”. Sometimes I find myself grasping at every moment like a drowning man, desperately trying to find some importance in it, before it slips away from me. Time is moving so rapidly while I am stuck in molasses. In this, consistency is my greatest enemy because it tricks my brain into thinking that time has graciously stopped to wait for me. Days become so similar that they escape without warning, bleeding into each other. My mind keeps searching for some significance to each moment so that it can distinguish one day from another, one week from the next. Instead, I am consistently left with the feeling of wanting to do more and discover even more. I can’t even allow myself a moment of boredom. Even this blog becomes a constant rebuke. It tells me to find something more interesting to write about than the stretches of emptiness and insecurity. Perhaps that is how internships have gotten so monstrously misrepresented. We head into them with massive expectations and then let those premature expectations shape the rest of the experience. It turns routine into something to be despised instead of appreciating what it truly means. Settling into a routine means that I have already changed and grown. I came to Palo Alto as a stranger and now, I am intimately familiar with its rhythms and streets. I came to LifeMoves uncertain of my role and now I know where I fit in. I even know that I have made a real impact. Maybe routine doesn’t have to mean complacency. It can be a foundation for better and greater things.
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- Settling into a Routine