It is hard to believe that I am now more than halfway through this summer internship; it seems like just yesterday I first stepped into the lab and now I’m running participants on my own, which is very fulfilling. However, my biggest accomplishment when it comes to running our multiple studies has to go to the dog study. This particular study had always had me a little worried about running it on my own because it is so involved: there is a script to memorize, a toddler to maintain the attention of, a dog to get to follow commands, two cameras recording your every action, and way too many things falling out of your pockets. Thus, it’s no wonder why I always shied away from running the study on my own, long enough until I was the only one who hadn’t. And you can imagine when that fateful day finally arrived, I was a nervous wreck and very hard critic of my performance during the study. However, over the past week, we have been coding every video of our study, which means inevitably we had to watch ourselves conduct the study. As ready as I was to cringe so hard at my videos and be embarrassed about running the study terribly, that didn’t happen. What I saw was somebody running the study just as well as all the others who had run it, and didn’t mess up as much as she had thought in the moment.
This experience made me realize how critical we can be on ourselves at times. In this instance, looking at myself from an outsider’s point of view gave me more confidence in myself and my own abilities. In total, taking a step back and trying to see yourself from an outsider’s perspective is necessary to truly evaluate your own work. Seeing the good in what you do will give you a well-deserved confidence boost.