Updated: Nov 30, 2018
By: Amanda Crotzer
For newcomers, the challenge of finding a public relations internship is daunting. Finding the internship that suits you is even more so. Writing dozens of cover letters and pouring over requirements makes the application process draining. When I began interviewing, I questioned my abilities and qualifications as a PR student. Does my resume fit my brand? Have I been involved in enough activities? Am I good enough for this position?
The answer: Yes.
How do you become the best version of yourself? Overcome self-doubt, embrace the fear, and challenge yourself. Pushing these boundaries and being a little uncomfortable is an empowering experience with great rewards.
Overcome the self-doubt
I transferred to the University of Texas last year, and was worried I would be far behind my peers. I am a 24-year-old married woman returning to school after working as a receptionist for a product manufacturing company. I felt like an imposter. Had I fooled admissions into accepting me? I was embarrassed of my age and concerned my peers would reject me.
A guest speaker introduced me to the concept of the imposter syndrome. It is a psychological phenomenon in which a person doubts their abilities and feels fraudulent in their position.
I felt this message to my core, but then it dawned on me. My age is fine. My mindset was wrong. I didn’t luck my way into a top university.
This understanding gave me confidence in myself and my abilities.
Embrace the fear
Imagine where you want to be 5 years from today. What is keeping you from achieving those goals? Constant concern about your value will not advance you in life.
I learned to say yes to new challenges, even if I thought I wasn’t good enough. Sometimes, just saying “yes” is scarier than the actual experience.
Last summer, I began applying for my first internship. Let me tell you: the process is not easy. You face constant rejection after pouring your soul into the perfect cover letter.
Eventually, I found a place to take me in, and I am thankful they did. Now here I am, facing that same rejection again while searching for a spring internship. I press on, knowing where I want to be in 5 years.
Your fear should drive your determination. It should never stop you from becoming more
qualified. Take the plunge. Accept your lack of control over your circumstances. Embrace the
fear and be stronger for it.
I will not allow myself to get in my own way. A year ago, my comfort zone was answering
phones and separating paper clips (yes, that was a real assignment I had). Today I have more experience in a field I love because I chose to say yes.
Here is my challenge for you: try something new. Anything new. Whether you apply to an internship or become a leader in an organization. Face your fears, and it will pay off.