A Letter To My Future Professional Self
In recognition of Social Work Month, two Social Work interns at Cook Children's wrote a letter to their future personal selves.
To My Future Professional Self,
First and foremost, congratulations! All of your hours studying, stressing over papers, and balancing field work and school finally paid off. You are becoming the social worker you always dreamt to be and can begin impacting the lives of many. It may feel like this is just the beginning, but do not forget all you have learned along the way!
- It is okay to not know all of the answers. Asking questions shows strength and courage, not weakness.
- Just as you may have felt as an intern, in being new to the workforce, you may be scared to speak up and share your insight. Do not be afraid; your perspective is always valuable. You are an asset to your team.
- Never shy away from curiosity. Without it, there is no room for growth.
- There is always more to learn about. Ask questions. Do research. Engage in conversation. Say yes to all learning opportunities.
- Be confident! Imposter syndrome will always sneak up on you, but remind yourself of your knowledge and your abilities. You know so much more than you may think!
- It’s okay to make mistakes, as long as you learn from them along the way.
- Stand your ground in your values as a social worker. Let them guide you in each interaction. This creates the strong foundation you need to take on any new challenge.
- And lastly, coffee breaks are always an essential form of self-care.
This list of advice is just a drop in the bucket of what you will learn throughout your career.
Now that you are a social worker, you have the honor to be invited into others’ lives and do your best to help them in their time of need. This profession gifts you with the ability to make unique and meaningful relationships, so do not take one moment for granted.
On the days you may be tired and worn down, never forget the eagerness and passion that you felt as an intern. You are capable, you are important, and finally, you are an official social worker. Enjoy these moments and continue to lead with kindness and empathy.
Your Social Work Intern Self