This summer flew by. I mean that in the most serious, non-exaggerated sense. It feels like just last week I was hauling all of my stuff out of my dorm room and back into my parents’ houses. I was nervous but eager to start my summer internship at Cincinnati Magazine and I was planning on filling my days with adventures around the city.

In reality, it’s been four months since my summer break started. As I sit here, at the end of the first day of my last week of interning, just one week before moving back to Athens, I can’t help but reflect on the reality of my summer. The summer exceeded my expectations in some ways but fell short in others. Regardless, with its highs and lows, this summer has given me countless lessons to incorporate into my everyday life from here on out. 

Something I didn’t anticipate at the beginning of the summer was just how much of my time would be spent working. Between 15 hours at my internship and around 28 hours at my retail job, I didn’t have nearly as much downtime as I had hoped. As a result, I didn’t have as much leisure time to go out and do things around the city. While this is a bummer, I did realize how important quality time with loved ones is. 

By the end of most of my days [after heading straight from interning to working], I was way too exhausted to even think about anything other than sitting around watching TV. While this may sound boring to some people, these were some of my favorite nights. Whether it was binge-watching Gilmore Girls with my boyfriend, having a face mask and movie night with my mom or watching movies and eating ice cream with my dad, those nights ended up being so special to me, especially considering I live away from home most of the year.

This isn’t to say that I just sat around all summer. Some of my favorite memories from the summer have been going to the drive-in movie theater for the first time [I’ve always wanted to be a romance novel cliche], attending LaureLive Music Festival for the first time and getting to catch up with friends from high school and elementary school that I don’t get to see often. 

I’ve also really enjoyed my internship this summer. Though this was my second summer interning with Cincinnati Magazine, I took on a completely different position. Rather than just fact-checking and pitching story ideas, I helped the magazine’s digital team upload online and social media content. Through this internship, I’ve realized that I want to do more as a journalist than just write. I’ve loved learning about audience engagement and the importance of an online presence in the quickly changing world of journalism and hope to continue to pursue this in my career. [I was even able to take tips I learned from the magazine and apply it to Backdrop magazine’s new website!]

Summer can be tough when you’re working almost full-time. It’s hard to balance work, internships, time with family and time with friends. But, the next time you start to feel overwhelmed remember these three tips:

  1. Don’t take quality time for granted
  2. Remember to spend some time trying new things
  3. Find something you’re passionate about to make workdays enjoyable

We’re still trying to find the perfect life balance as well [if that’s even possible], but we’re slowly getting there! Share with us on Instagram what you took away from your summer break.

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