There is always such a push to find THE perfect summer job. And, not just a job, but an internship — it just sounds more prestigious, right? Well, maybe sometimes, you just need a job, to make money for school or to pay the rent. Maybe you don’t need the perfect job, but just a job.
We’ve all had mindless summer jobs and we’ve still learned something from them. When you are in the middle of them, you think they are useless. But, later on, you will realize that you can take away something from every experience. And maybe, a mindless job is just the best thing for right now. Plus, you can use your spare brain cells for getting that organic chemistry course out of the way.
With all of these mindless jobs, you will find that you still probably learned something that you will take with you to your next job, like learning how to get along with difficult people, or how to manage your time, or even how to manage boredom.
What was your favorite mindless job? What did you take away from it?Here are some reasons why everyone should work a mindless job:
1. Less Stress
The more mindful your jobs become, the more responsibility and stress that comes with them. Enjoy the lower level of responsibility you have now, where you can go home and forget about your job. One day, you might have to actually read your work emails the last thing before you go to sleep and the first thing when you wake up. For now, chillax.
2. Learn How to Follow
When you have a mindful summer job, you have to be a leader and take responsibility for things. One of the best things I ever learned about being a leader, was to learn how to be a follower. Once you learn what it is like to learn from a great (or even not-so-great) leader, you learn that there are times to lead, times to follow, and what it takes to motivate people whom you lead. Those are important lessons, too.
3. Practice Basic Skills and Build a Work History
My husband had an “internship” one summer which was really a clerical job. The job was far from challenging intellectually, but it did give him an opportunity to practice his touch-typing and proofreading skills, ones he still uses 30 years later. He also got a very nice recommendation letter at the end of summer, which was useful for his next, real internship.
4. People Watch
My husband claims you learn so much from watching people. You can’t really people watch in a formal internship — it is frowned upon. But, as you scoop ice cream or tear movie tickets, you are in prime people-watching mode! This is great if you are a psych major and want to learn more about the human condition!
5. Enjoy the Outdoors
If you have the chance to pet-sit or babysit, you can take advantage of great weather and spend time outdoors. When you have a big fancy internship or permanent job, you probably can’t just pack up your office and head outside. Enjoy the summer weather while you can.
6. Be Creative
I had one mindless summer job at a major company. They didn’t have enough work for me to do so I figured out how to keep myself busy: I worked on my graduate school applications. It was a win/win for everyone. They were happy that I found a way to keep busy and I was happy being busy. I learned how to be creative in an uncreative atmosphere.