Using My Time to its Full Potential

When I decided I wanted to do an internship abroad I knew that there would be so much to see and do and that I would have to fit it around my internship. Before I came I made a long list of things that I wanted to see and do, both inside and outside of Dublin and I ranked them in order of priority. Things like the Cliffs of Moher and St. Patricks Cathedral were at the top of the list while others like Cork or Kilkenny were further down the list. That’s where using my time wisely came into play. The first week I was here, I was able to knock off a lot from my Dublin list by using the Hop-on Hop-off Bus tour and hitting as many places as possible. In addition to that, I’ve made plans to travel to several places on the weekend in order to maximize my time. When I end work for the day I’ve also tried to wander around the city and take it all in, using all of my available time instead of rushing back home. This week was mainly about getting used to the commute and hours of the internship but I was able to try some new places for dinner as well as walk around the city as I made my way home. Without time management it would become difficult for me to be able to see everything I want to see while also completing my internship.

Time management is very important in my internship. I have around a 45 minute commute however the buses can sometimes be unreliable (my bus was cancelled on me my first day and I ended up running late) so I usually leave around 9am in order to walk to the bus stop. Sometimes, like today, that means I arrive 30 minutes early while other times I am right on time. But when I do arrive early I just take the time to sit and people watch and chill before heading in for the day. My bus stop is at one of the train stations in Dublin and that makes it a great place to watch all the people coming and going from all over Ireland. Once I’ve been here a little while longer I’ll get more used to how the bus works and will not feel as anxious that I will be late. It was drilled into my head from my very first job that you should arrive 15 minutes early to show that you are prepared but here that is not the case. Luckily we were warned to arrive exactly on time otherwise I might have made a fool of myself for arriving too early.

In addition to my commute, I have to use my time well within my internship. I am working to curate an exhibit which means I am working on one project for the entire time, mostly independently. The last few days have been spent researching potential topics and I am mainly left to my own devices which means I have to keep myself on task. I can sometimes get bored of staring at my screen all the time so I’ve made sure to take advantage of the tea and lunch breaks by going out into the courtyard and enjoying the nice weather. I’ve also set up short 5 minute breaks when I start becoming really distracted, allowing myself 5 minutes to become side-tracked before coming back to the main task. When researching I usually end up on a completely different topic after clicking the different links and becoming interested in different parts of the topic. This is when I allow myself the 5 minutes to read about something before returning to the main task at hand. In the past when I’ve had part time internships, it was easier to stay on task because I was only there for a short amount of time but being here close to full time has required me to adjust my time management strategy so that I don’t end up wasting the entire day on a Wikipedia deep dive. I have also set up small goals for myself, such as choosing a research topic by Monday so that I can get started on the research for the actual exhibit and continue forward. This deadline, although flexible, helps me to keep on task because there is a deadline approaching that I can’t ignore. 6-7 weeks is not a long time to put an exhibition together and I will need to use my time wisely if I want to finish in time to host an open day to show it off.