Once again.. this internship experience was about getting out of my comfort zone and leaning in, but in a slightly different way. I was ready to code and to contribute to the team. I was well versed with Sandberg's mantra to shift from the " what can I get ? " to " what do I offer ? " mindset. To Proceed and Be Bold and to say YES to any kind of task I felt uncomfortable with or any project I felt I could not do.
And that is exactly what happened... Cloud Technology and Java Script Libraries are not my favorite topics. But I anyway worked on them and by the end of the internship I realized , "Eh! They were not that difficult !! " . Apart from surprising myself by being able to understand new technologies easier than I thought I could, I leaned in by asking for help and by asking for feedback. Two very important values in Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In Book that can help anyone succeed in one's career. Asking for Help is something I hate doing because of the fear that I might end up irritating someone. Thank God that my mentor was a patient one and handled all my questions calmly !! Asking for a feedback was more difficult considering how sensitive I am and how I have never been able to take criticism. I watched "Feedback is a gift" video on LeanIn.Org Website 5 times and not only got the courage to ask for feedback about my work from my manager, mentor and the other colleagues in the team but also made sure that I don't take it personally.
Unexpectedly, I also leaned in in a way Sheryl did not write about. And I am so glad I did. I went on a team trip. Trust Me !! Going to Manali with almost strangers was way way out of my comfort zone. Same was attending the Cocktail Party and other Team Parties. I went for them only to get to know more about myself. This was the first time , it did not take much time or effort for me to get comfortable with everyone during the trip. I strongly believe that the credit goes to the positive energy that flows within the work culture and to some "crazy" people who consistently encouraged me to be a part of the group conversations. I discovered that I enjoy more when I am not afraid of people around me and when I let myself free. I never knew I could make friends so quickly and easily.
Like every other experience in my life since last 2 years ( when I started leaning in ), this internship also helped me learn about technologies, the professional world and about myself. I finally believe that software is the right field for me. I realized that I am happier when I am not afraid to be myself. I am glad I took up small challenges and once again leaned in in my own way.