New things always seem shinier at the beginning.
High school can’t come fast enough for kids, driver’s ed makes teenagers feel like Paul Walker, and reaching legal drinking age is considered an amazing life achievement.
But sure enough, the rose-coloured glasses come off, and things start to normalize. This same concept can be applied to young aspiring professionals – the excitement of entering the working world almost creates an alternate reality; a divide between the new interns and the experienced full-timers.
This is probably why employees can spot the intern keeners almost a mile away. However, like all high schoolers, student drivers, and first-time drinkers, these fresh hires will need to settle down.
Here are some of the most common experiences people go through when they transition from intern to full-time.
1. The concept of “permanence” sets in
Often referred to as the “quarter-life crisis”, young professionals will feel a lack of transience for the first time in their lives. After all, up ’til this point, their chapters have been pretty short: four years of high school, four years of college… the idea of spending 40 years in the workforce is enough to mellow anyone out.
2. You stop treating daily work like an interview
Interns are taught to always have their game face on. After all, these junior employees are working to acquire something bigger: permanent employment. However, once you achieve your goal, your only real task is to do good work and not get fired. There isn’t as much urgency in that, so it’s natural for individuals to settle down.
3. You stop sending overly-enthusiastic emails
Their emails start as finely crafted specimens: carefully structured and punctuated, peppered with a little workplace humor to please the bosses and an average of one exclamation point for every 2-3 sentences to ensure everyone knows they’re a positive and enthusiastic fellow. This eventually devolves into function-based sentences lacking any sign of grammar, salutation, and sign-off. Efficiency trumps all.
4. You get friendlier with your coworkers
When the imaginary divide between full-time staff and interns is eliminated. all of a sudden, these people seem a lot more human. These new hires don’t have to work so hard to make positive impressions 100% of the time – they just have to produce good work and make the lives of the people around them easier.
5. You stop putting extra work into your outfit
The idea of “dressing to impress” goes out the window. You’ve already impressed them enough to get the job… your next fashion challenge is to see how many “casual” items you can incorporate into your wardrobe in order to maximize comfort at work without alerting HR.
Yes, having a routine isn’t exactly glamorous or sexy. And while it’s easy to talk smack about it, there’s also a lot to appreciate. After all, finding stability in your twenties can feel like you hit the motherload… so rock that new employee title, embrace that consistency, and enjoy this extensive new chapter of your life.