It goes without saying that this year has had its challenges.

Bushfires, coronavirus, lockdown, Brexit, a global recession, Prince Harry leaving the Royal Family, and that’s only the half of it! I’m sure none of us could’ve pictured this as we sipped champagne at New Years.

But the new normal has become just that… normal!

I started my internship at Madden in March and in my third week, life was turned upside down and I began working from home. It’s been a very valuable experience for me, despite the obvious challenges of 2020, and it’s shown me that PR is definitely  the career I want to pursue.

So, here is what my remote internship has taught me:

Trust in your decisions

The battle with our inner critic can feel constant. Not wanting to disappoint anyone and wanting to prove you’re capable, even though you’re just learning, can be hard to deal with sometimes.

While I can’t say I’ve mastered this yet, working remotely has certainly shed a light on how important it is to trust in oneself, especially when you don’t have someone constantly overlooking your work as you would in an office.

It’s important to remind yourself that everyone has had these moments of self-doubt. Making mistakes is all part of being an intern, so don’t let the fear of failure hold you back!

We can control how we respond to things we can’t control

There’s a Spanish saying that goes “Al mal tiempo, buena cara”. It translates to ‘In bad weather, a good face’. I’ve always taken this to mean that while you may not be able to change the situation, you can change your attitude.

This pandemic has tested everyone, and while I can only speak for my own experience, I believe perspective is key. There have been lots of changes that many of us have struggled with, but positivity is powerful. It doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not being realistic, but rather that you acknowledge that even in difficult circumstances, there’s a path through to the other side.

Uncertainty is a certainty in life, and COVID-19 has been a crash course in adaptability, which I have learnt is a paramount skillset to have in your toolbox when working as a PR professional.

Working from home is a skill in itself

Remote working is a completely different experience from working in an office. For a start, keeping the balance between work-life and home-life is hard when they became one and the same. I’ve learnt the importance of creating a separation of space and switching off once work has finished for the day.

Without the built-in discipline of the office, staying productive and motivated can sometimes be a struggle. Naturally, this is where effective and constant communication is so important.

Our team has a morning meeting where everyone lists their priorities for the day and ensures we are all on the same page. Keeping open lines of communication and staying accountable boosts productivity, especially when working from home.

It took me a little while, but I’ve come to enjoy the luxuries of working remotely.

I’m so grateful to have had this experience at Madden. It helps when you have a lovely and supportive team behind you that wants you to succeed.

So, as I start my new role as an Account Coordinator, I feel ready for anything. Bring on 2021!