Overcoming Obstacles at TWC | The Washington Center

Overcoming Obstacles at TWC

Self-reflection is the process of looking back on one's own behavior, character, motives, and actions. It's the ability to see all of the decisions you have made (good or bad) and consider how those decisions have impacted you.


During my TWC experience, self-reflection has helped me overcome many adversities and stay positive. Below, I've outlined four lessons that I have learned during my time here which have shaped me as both a student and a professional.


1. It's not always easy to find your niche

When you first move to a new city, you are surrounded by people from different walks of life and different parts of the globe. If you are not especially apt when it comes to mingling with new people, fear not. You are not a rare species. There are other specimens like you too, who are just as timid and afraid about not being able to mingle well with others.


The good news is, you can easily make friends by participating in TWC events, such as the Global Festival or Open Mic Night. You can bond with other interns at your internship site or meet people in your LEAD Small Group or evening course. Whatever the case, do not be afraid to branch out and embrace opportunities to meet new people. So, the next time you see someone you kind of know, be open-minded and strike a conversation with them. They may end up being your new best friend.


Friends I've met through TWC!


2. It's not always easy to be new to the work environment

If you feel like you are always asking questions to your supervisor at your internship site, know that they are not here to judge you! They understand that you are still in the process of learning.


You shouldn't feel bad about not always knowing how to act in the work environment you just recently joined. Always ask for clarification when you need it and avoid any form of miscommunication! You supervisor will not mind if you ask him or her for clarity on something.


Professional communication

Credit: Dream Random


3. It's not easy to stay healthy

If you are having trouble balancing your TWC evening course, LEAD Colloquium, a personal life, and an internship, sometimes the workload might adversely affect your personal health. The key is to make sure you carve at least 30 minutes a day for yourself.

During this period, you can engage in some deep meditation, read a good book, listen to heavy metal dogma (if you're like me and this calms you down), run around a nearby park, or even dance. Whatever the activity, make sure you are sending oxygen to your brain and not confining yourself to a sedentary lifestyle while you are in D.C. It can be very easy to get bogged down and stressed, so make time for yourself so that you don't get overwhelmed either physically or emotionally.


Credit: Sun Sentinel


4. It's not easy to budget your money (when it comes to food, especially)

Sometimes, it is so easy to gravitate towards luxurious, savory foods and forget about how bare your wallet is. When I started to see a negative linear correlation between the number of times I went to an expensive restaurant and the amount of money I had left in my bank account, I decided to give my wallet a break.

It was hard at first to stray away from all of the great food I liked to eat. But, there was a solution I was able to embrace to counter all of this: cooking my own meals during the week. While this may seem laborious, just think about how you can use your saved money on the weekends to eat at higher-end restaurants!


A meal at Swahili Village, just one of the D.C. restaurants I love to visit!


These are just a few struggles I overcame during my time in D.C. Hopefully, my experience and the lessons I learned will help you in your own TWC experience!


Ci Vediamo


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