Thursday, July 1, 2010

Lifestyles Intern Says Relax (Try To Do It)

I’m three weeks into my internship and have learned a very important real world lesson: no matter how old you are, you will still want to take naps. Working eight hours a day, five days a week is exhausting!

It’s hard to sit at my desk and focus on the articles I need to fact check or the people I need to contact when I can only think about letting my eyes close for a few minutes. By the time I get home, all I want to do is go to sleep. Of course, I’m easily convinced that I can stay up until a later hour, but I regret it the next morning. Have you noticed that whatever time you have to get up in the morning, whether it’s 6:30 a.m. or 9 a.m., is still too early? At school, waking up for my 9:30 a.m. class was a challenge- now I would love to be able to sleep that late!

I’ve always thought of summer as the time to relax by the pool and be lazy all day, so it’s been difficult reconciling this laid-back season with the more formal atmosphere of an office. Since I’d like to try and have the best of both worlds (yes, I am shamelessly quoting Miley Cyrus), here’s my proposal: nap rooms in every office! It would be great to just take half an hour to lie on a couch or cot and power nap. I’ve debated lying on the floor under my desk, but I think that would be frowned upon.

Okay, maybe that plan is a little far-fetched. Luckily, most internships I’ve heard about provide a compromise: a nice, hour-long lunch break. I have taken full advantage of mine. I’ve never thought I could eat lunch alone (sadly, making sure I have someone to eat with is probably my number one source of stress at school), but now I cherish it. I wander the neighborhood that my office is in and try to eat somewhere new every day. There’s nothing more relaxing than sitting alone, reading or people watching, and enjoying a nice lunch in the middle of the work day. I’ve found some really delicious restaurants like the café in the picture - it has amazing crepes. If you’ve been given the opportunity of a lunch break, make sure you take advantage of it!

I think I’ve settled into a nice routine at the magazine, even though I still crave sleep. The editors are beginning to get to know me better and are assigning me more tasks, so I really do feel like I’m contributing. I can’t wait to share more about my internship with the Ed community this summer!

Do you have tips to relax while working 9-5? How do you manage the daily grind?

Sleepily yours,
Lifestyles Intern


  1. I have a reporting internship at a newspaper. I know people normally complain about too much to do, but I'm lacking stuff to keep me occupied. Coming from my college newspaper where I never have a spare moment, the boredom is killing me and making me all sorts of sleepy. If it gets too bad surfing the internet and scouring the office for an assignment, I take a walk or drive around town looking for something to cover. Or I just take short mental health breaks.

  2. I'm a magazine editor, and have been for two different titles for about 3 years now. Sometimes, after you ship a magazine, there's a day or two with some down time. These days are the worst, because, like you, I want to curl up under my desk and powernap. I have also greatly thought out a plan to propose to my company about a nap room (ha!) but haven't had much success with it. I, like easteele from above, usually just get up and walk. I'll walk to a nearby store, buy some lip gloss, walk to get some coffee or gelato, walk to the bookstore with a coworker and gab for a bit, sit and drink espresso and peruse the magazine racks for a bit. Staying active is the only way to combat those 3 o'clock "oh my god I want to die" sleepy blues.