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Dylan Radford is a senior at Indiana Wesleyan University, studying Strategic Communication with a concentration in Public Relations. He plans to graduate in December of 2016. He is one of two Marketing & Public Relations interns at the Crossroads of America Council, Boy Scouts of America.

Dylan Radford graphic

I can’t begin to tell you the number of times that I’ve heard, “Take your student status as an opportunity to gain informational interviews, talk to professionals in the workforce and even shadow employers in their work environment. It won’t be as easy once you lose that status.”

I’m currently more than halfway through my summer internship with one semester left of college. The amount of advice that I’ve received from a number of people in the office here at the Crossroads of America Council (CAC), Boy Scouts of America can sometimes be repetitive, but also rewarding in its own way. Sitting down and talking to Sarah Pelko, who was last year’s summer intern, has been very informative. Many of the projects we have worked on are similar in nature. It’s encouraging to have someone that I can talk to about those projects or if I’m having a problem in some area. Simply knowing that someone has been in the same place I’m currently in is encouraging.

I have worked on a number of projects this summer, but one of the biggest has been Basecamp at the Indiana State Fair. In all honesty, my initial reaction was, “Oh my goodness, there’s no way I can do all of this!” Right there, I was already beginning to sell myself short because the end goal seemed so far away. Don’t get me wrong, it’s been a lot of work to get to where I am at now. There have been tasks ranging from creating social media posts and designs, recruiting over 100 volunteers to help over the course of the 17 days of the state fair, and ironing out the little details.

I think it’s second nature for many of us to immediately sell ourselves short rather than have a positive outlook on whatever we are doing. This is one of those things that is easier said than done and it may very well take time to master (if it’s possible to actually master this). Instead of looking at the picture as a whole, break the obstacle down into little parts or sections that together will create the whole finished piece.

I also think of approaching obstacles like a puzzle. Most people do not dive in and start putting together every piece that they can. They slowly start with the borders, the areas that have words and build upon the sections that are completed. I view this task as a huge puzzle with multiple little pieces that go into play, from the planning to the organization and soon to the execution of Basecamp. Soon, I’ll be able to take a moment to breathe, step back and see the work that I can accomplish when I don’t sell myself short.

How often do you sell yourself short or doubt your abilities?

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