How to Turn Your Internship Into a Full-Time Job

After contemplating what the point of going to college was, I decided I needed a reality check. I wasn’t going to let myself become another statistic – another person who attends a four year university and leaves with a heap of debt instead of a job that jump-starts their career.

The first few months after college were fun. I thoroughly enjoyed being a recent-unemployed-grad. “I’ll get a job right after summer.”

A year later, and I was still working at a coffee shop. It was hard not to compare myself to my other colleagues who were working their dream jobs – at Sony or Yelp.

I knew I had to redirect my energy. I had to open myself up to all the potential opportunities – internships, temp positions, mentoring, self-promoting, etc. What I learned next was eye-opening. If an opportunity doesn’t initially exist, you can create one for yourself. When you invest in yourself and your work ethic, the result is powerful.

You have to start somewhere, and the first place you should start is where your resources take you. If small opportunities come your way – hell, grab em’ by the balls! Show the world how valuable you are and make your future employer say “I need that person to work for us.”

Here are five things you can start doing to turn your temp position or internship into a full-time job:

1. Take initiative. Chances are your boss or superior is busy working on a project or report with a deadline. Taking initiative will not only boost your confidence, but it will impress your boss. This quality separates the hustlers from the wanna-be’s. The people who go the extra mile and take on challenges are the ones who usually succeed. Next time you have a task at hand, think to yourself can I figure this out on my own? Can I at least try? Even if you don’t succeed, your efforts will indefinitely be recognized. It’s better to try and fail then to not try at all. No matter if the task is big or small, taking initiative makes you stand out!

2. Know when to take responsibility and apologize. It’s never fun admitting you messed up – actually, it kind of takes a little jab at your ego. Pass the tissues, my ego is crying. But in all seriousness, no job is gonna want to see people pointing fingers. All they care about is that whatever incident took place won’t happen again. If this includes you saying the s-word and taking the blame for something you didn’t necessarily do, then so be it. And if you did make a mistake, then you definitely need to be able to own up to it and apologize. People don’t expect you to be perfect, but they do expect you to be professional. And even though your ego might be a little bruised, your employer will respect you more than if you threw someone else under the bus or played the blame game. So put your big-girl pants on and know when to say sorry. You don’t want to be left unemployed singing J-Biebs song.

3. Ask questions. Remember when we were kids and our teachers told us, “no question is a dumb question.” – well that’s debatable, but when it comes to your career, asking questions is extremely beneficial. How are you supposed to know how to do something if no one has shown you? Sometimes, it’s necessary to ask questions. Try not to feel embarrassed or intimated to the point where you hold questions back. In the long run, it’s better to get all your ducks in a row instead of making mistake after mistake. There’s nothing wrong with asking for help if you truly don’t understand something. Asking questions also shows that you want to learn. Who doesn’t love an employee who’s invested in their work?

4. Learn how to be decisive (trust your gut). Don’t fall into the habit of second-guessing yourself or selling yourself short. When it’s game time, athletes don’t second guess their moves, right? So neither should you. Learn how to trust yourself in the work environment – even if you’re intimidated. By all means, feeling confused about an assignment is all right. You can ask questions to clarify, but don’t get stuck because you’re scared you’ll make the wrong decision or you work won’t be good enough. If anything you’ll learn from your mistakes. Trust your gut! You got this! And if all else fails, fake it till you make it. 

5. Treat it like a real job. Showing up late or ignoring deadlines isn’t going to get you very far. Make sure you’re aware of your rules and responsibilities and then stick to them. Treat your position with respect, even if it’s not exactly where you envision yourself. Sportscaster, Erin Andrews offers her inspiring insight, “Success doesn’t happen overnight. Keep your eye on the prize and don’t look back.” So don’t feel discouraged if you’re not working your dream job quite yet. Just keep reaching for the stars – you’ll get there. Time and patience are your new best friends. If you put in the hard work, there’s no doubt you’ll succeed. One of my biggest inspirations, Sophia Amoruso suggests,“You don’t get taken seriously by asking someone to take you seriously. You’ve got to show up and own it.” Another reason to treat your position like a full-time real job! #dothedamnthing

Many of us are under the impression that only a small percent of college graduates become employed. Fortunately, Forbes writer, Jeffrey Dorfman, is here to set the record straight, “As of the January 2017 report which contains numbers for December 2016, the unemployment rate for college graduates was only 2.5 percent.” This percent breaks down to 1 in 40 college grads. You actually have a better chance of catching a STI than staying an unemployed graduate… not sure if that’s helpful, but it’s true! 

The point is, that even though you might not land your dream job straight out of college, you can still gain experience in other ways. Don’t focus on the end result so hard that you can’t figure out where to begin because you are too overwhelmed. You have to start somewhere! And remember when you do get an opportunity, refer to the five ways to turn it into full-time position!

Let me leave you with some advice from my all time #girlboss idol, Amoruso, “Don’t give up, don’t take anything personally, and don’t take no for an answer,” (unless we’re talking about sex – then definitely listen to no). 

Now go out their and conquer the work force future entrepreneurs. You got this!

5 Things

With Thanksgiving just passing, I felt compelled to share my recent discovery. This practice was inspired by my friend, Sarah Brantley, and Rhonda Byrne’s world-renown book, The Secret. Every morning, when I wake up I say five things I am grateful for. Since committing to this exercise only a few weeks ago, my life has changed. We’ve all heard the quote, “Start each day with a grateful heart.” Although that might sound cliche, I’m here to tell you, it’s worth it. Over the past few weeks, my view on life has shifted by simply taking a few minutes out of my day to reflect on what I have.

Many of us don’t realize how often we focus our attention on the negative aspects of life. The Secret’s chapter, Powerful Processes, reveals how to change your way of thinking from negative to positive. Dr. Joe Vitale explains, “What can you do right now to begin to turn your life around? The very first thing is to start making a list of things to be grateful for. This shifts your energy and starts to shift your thinking.” He continues by explaining how obsessing over things you don’t have will bring more negativity into your life. Feeling as though you do not have enough isn’t going to bring you happiness. Instead, you will feel ungrateful and in return incomplete. The key is to focus on what you do have.

After coming to this realization, I have consciously made the effort to say “thank you” and to reflect on what I am grateful for each morning when I wake up. Some days I am grateful for how my mom raised me or having two legs, other days I am thankful for my electric toothbrush or being able to get my nails done. It doesn’t matter how big or small your item is – what matters is how grateful you are.

Now when I splatter toothpaste on my shirt, my entire day isn’t ruined, instead I remember how much gratitude I should have. This exercise only takes me a few minutes, and I never repeat what I am grateful for. I always challenge myself to think of something new to say. It might take me a minute longer but it leaves me feeling more satisfied. I now find it impossible to “wake up on the wrong side of the bed,” because as soon as my feet touch the ground I am thinking of something I am thankful for. This automatically shifts my attention and mood to feeling happy, humble and hopeful.

I know life can have its challenging moments, and it’s not always easy to feel happy. Reflecting on what you have is a great way to start your day, and can grant happiness before you even get out of bed. This daily practice not only increases gratitude but enhances your life significantly by promoting happiness and positivity.

Me Too.

Just tell him you’re going to the bathroom. Or say you just got your period or something. No, he’ll think that’s gross. What if he tries to follow me to the bathroom? This is so awkward. How do I leave? At first I didn’t want to come off as rude.. But this is a little ridiculous.

First off, why did he take me into his small-ass college dorm room that has a bunk bed with no sheets. I’m not sure how ‘help me find my friends’ equates to ‘take me to your room.’ But here we are. Also. What’s that smell? Low-key scared to look in his hamper. Honestly, I might throw up. But maybe that’s because I slammed back 5 tequila shots in one hour. Now I actually have to go to the bathroom.

“Heyyy budddy. Uhm. Dónde está bañooo?


“Oh, ha, where’s the bathroom?”

“That closed door is the bathroom.”

Shut up. It’s in his room? Ok, maybe someone will answer from my group chat.

“Ok. Thanks. Be R beeeee”

* Walks in bathroom and shuts door *

Are you real? Are you reeaaalllll? How are you dead right now?!

* Throws iPhone across the floor *

“Hey, you all good in there?”

Before I have a chance to answer the door slams open.

“What are you doing? What was that noise?”

I want to ask for a charger.. but I also don’t want him to know my phone is dead.

“Oh, sorry. I found out I have an exam super early and need to leave.”

Well that was easy.

I walked out the door and left.

Can we all agree right now that that’s what should have happened? I should’ve been able to leave at my own free will. I shouldn’t have had to even come up with an excuse. I should’ve been able to say ‘I want to go home’ and just leave.

That’s not what happened though. I was told ‘it was fine.’ When it clearly was not fine. I had been uncomfortable from the moment we entered his room.

There’s no way this is happening. I pushed him off and ran down three flights of stairs. I made it to the bottom and violently threw up.

I feel like I should be sorry, like I did something wrong. Like I deserved what happened because I got separated from my friends. No one deserves that. No one deserves to be in that situation. And if you ever have, don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself or speak out. Chances are a lot of people will be on your side and, unfortunately, know exactly what you’re going through.

I wish I could say the story above wasn’t true, or I hadn’t heard it from a friend before. Unfortunately, these situations occur all the time. After seeing #MeToo appear on every social media platform, it became apparent that many women experience this.

The Hashtag

The hashtag #MeToo originated from Tarana Burke but just recently went viral. After the Harvey Weinstein ‘biggest kept secret of Hollywood’ came out, #MeToo resurfaced. One after another, women came forward revealing their own sexual harassment experiences. The response was overwhelming. People started supporting each other by using the hashtag and showing that they are not alone.

According to National Sexual Resource Center, “One in five women and one in 71 men will be raped at some point in their lives.” Think of your sibling, co-worker, childhood friend, ex-partner, even a random acquaintance being in the wrong place at ‘the wrong time.’ As the statistic shows, women have a higher chance of becoming victims. We live in a patriarchal society where women are often taken advantage of. Baby-Boomers and Millennials have teamed up together to start a movement however.

And before I go any further, I need to clarify something. A Feminist is someone who believes in equal rights for both men and women and everything in-between. Put down your armor just because the word “fem” is in it. If we focus on the fact that we are all human beings, then we will continue to make progress. I hope to see men and women and everyone in between standing up against social injustices. My goal is for future generations to feel empowered to make a positive impact.

Hopefully this quote by Angela Davis can bring further inspiration, “I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change, I am changing the things I cannot accept.” Let’s unite together and change the things that bring pain, heartache and humiliation.

New Anxiety, Who Dis?


“Hey, is Kayla there?”

“Nah, this is anxiety. She’s out for the day. Or week. Or month. Whatever.”


As many of you know (or I hope you know), the past week was Mental Health Awareness Week, with October 10th marking “World Mental Health Day.” After reading an Instagram post by a dear friend, Cristina Laforgia (@cristinalaforg), I immediately felt compelled to write my next blog on it.

Anxiety comes in all shapes and sizes:

Generalized Anxiety Disorder 

Panic Disorder

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Social Anxiety Disorder


Lucky for me, I’ve only been diagnosed with the first two, so naturally, I’m convinced I have the third one too.

Anyways… I’m not positive where my anxiety stems from, but I have a hunch. It’s a complication of events. It’s genetic. And it’s definitely ironic. Until only a few years ago, I was incredibly stubborn about taking Advil or putting medicine into my body. ‘My mind and body will heal itself.’ Well, that worked out well – I now take an anxiety medication

So, How Did You

& Anxiety Meet?

If I was destined to cross paths with anxiety, you would think I would’ve back in 2012 when I moved across the country by myself. I moved from Massachusetts all the way to San Diego to attend college. But back then, I was your typical 18-year-old free-spirited naive teen. I felt invincible. Nothing could touch me. Not even this so-called ‘anxiety.’

After my freshman year, being far away from home started to sink in, and transitioning into adulthood came with its own challenges. I was diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder my Sophomore year. I got nervous before tests. I had trouble making decisions because I feared I would make the wrong ones. My hands got clammy before interviews.

This new disorder did not affect my everyday life, however. All of these symptoms seemed manageable. And then came the paranoia. I hated being alone. Ask my college boyfriend. If I had to sleep alone, I would cry fearing something would happen to me. But for some reason, when spring break came, I decided to stay at my college house while all my roommates went home. I figured I would be busy working on a film project, and besides, my roommate’s cat would keep me company. Maybe I was staying to conquer my fears. Either way, it didn’t work.

I became so paranoid one night I ended up calling 911.

My anxiety was in full-on swing. After that night, anxiety and I became best friends. We started doing everything together. It would randomly show up during school telling me to leave my classes. It would come to my job. It would interrupt my movie nights. It was the definition of a stage-five clinger.

Eventually, it started to interfere with my everyday life. I finally decided to go back home for the summer where I would be surrounded by childhood friends, family, my precious dog and a town I felt comfortable in.

When I came back to San Diego for my Junior year, I felt motivated. I had two years left to finish school and figure out what to do with my life. Maybe I just needed a security guard to make sure I was always safe. So what did I do? I hired a bodyguard.

No, I’m kidding. But I did adopt a German Shepherd.

As the year went on, I felt more and more stressed about school, work, my friends, family, and the hardships of life. My paranoia was at an all-time high. Don’t believe me?

One night, I went to watch a scary movie with my two roommates and was convinced there was a shooter in the theatre. I had a full-on panic attack and ran out hyperventilating. I broke out into hysteria. I even left my favorite water bottle behind. I realized how ridiculous I looked, but it didn’t matter. In the moment, I felt like my heart was going to explode..

The next attack I experienced was a month later – I was on my college campus walking to my class. I skipped class and sprinted to the  urgent care where I was monitored for two hours. I was prescribed emergency medication to slow my breathing and calm my central nervous system. The next few months were a nightmare.

I struggled between classes, work and even spending time with my friends. I was scared to leave my house, drive, go to the gym or interact with anyone. I was terrified when my next panic attack would sneak up on me. I felt like such a burden to everyone who had to deal with my irrational thoughts.

"But it's all in

your head."

I either felt isolated. Scared. Stupid. Tired. Irritated. Or


I still can’t decide what was worse: feeling all of those things or feeling nothing. When I felt all of those things I felt paralyzed. It was so hard to be in-the-moment without being in my head. And when I felt nothing I ended up skipping a 200 point final exam because I didn’t want to get out of bed. My anxiety controlled my life. I prayed a therapist would cure me. I did everything in the book, but still couldn’t manage all of my symptoms.

Finally, I started taking medication. It took me so long to accept it though. Not only is there nothing wrong with taking medication, taking it doesn’t make you weak. Shortly after starting it, my symptoms started to diminish. It’s like I started to see things in color again. The more I opened up about my anxiety, the more I realized how common it was. According to National Institute of Health, a mental health disorder affects 1 in 5 adults in America. This breaks down to 43 million people.

Since that’s a high number, you would think that it would be no big deal to open up about it, right?

Me too…

Think about it. Why don’t people talk about it more often? Maybe because it’s frowned upon? Maybe people are too scared to speak up?  Maybe they’re embarrassed? Maybe it’s too hard to articulate how they feel? Maybe they’re afraid of being judged? Maybe they don’t want to be seen as incompetent or weak? It’s sad that even I contemplated whether or not I should write this blog. The second my fingertips pressed on the keyboard I thought: What will future employers think?

If idolized celebrities like Ryan Reynolds, Lena Dunham, Demi Lovato, Kerry Washington, Cara Delevingne, Adam Levine, Kesha,  Ellen Degeneres, Jennifer Lawrence, Leonardo DiCaprio, Lady Gaga and so many more can openly talk about disorders they’ve experienced, then why can’t I?

My transition was by no means overnight. It took persistence, consistency and a positive attitude. Being able to freely speak about my experience has helped me acknowledge it and move forward. I am so lucky to have a strong support system to help me through this journey. I know there are so many others who are not as fortunate. I hope that this blog inspires others who are struggling with a mental health disorder. Finding what makes you happy and pursuing it can provide relief, and in my personal experience, there is no better feeling than an inner sense of comfort.

5 Reasons To Look Up

Nowadays, babies are practically born with iPhones glued to their right hands and selfie-sticks stuck to their left. Over the past decade, humans have become engrossed with technology and social media. Almost everyone, from Baby-Boomers to Millennials owns a cell-phone, iPad or laptop. In fact, Gen Y spends several hours a day on their phones according to the Washington Post.

Over the years, I’ve realized I too have become obsessed with my phone. I understand that sometimes it can be hard to leave our phones at home or keep them in our bags. The closer you get to your phone, the harder it is to put it away and try to be in the moment. This constant distraction can make you feel disconnected from what’s occurring right here and right now. We all could benefit from a putting down our phone.

Here are five reasons you should take a break from that screen and look up:

1. Mindfulness: Being mindful means being in-the-moment. Breathing exercises, stretching, yoga, meditation and concentrating on what you’re feeling at that particular time, can improve mindfulness. Practicing this can reduce stress and anxiety. Remember to give your body the attention it deserves and take the time to recognize how it feels. So put down that phone and embrace what you’re feeling from your tip-toes to the crown of your head.

2. Networking: Ever get in an elevator and think.. well, this is awkward. Most of the time people hide behind their screens and only open their mouth to say, “what floor?” A  more productive use of your time is to try and network. Start a conversation with the person next you. After all, you might indirectly know them according to the six degrees of Kevin Bacon. And if not, hey you just made a new friend, met your next boss, potential business partner, or your future soulmate. You never know who’s standing next to you, so don’t be shy!

3. Observing: It’s intriguing to watch different types of people interact as if no one was watching. Observing your surroundings is a great way to become more aware. Instead of walking down the street with your eyes glued to your screen, put your head up and embrace the beautiful elements this world has to offer. Admiring your environment daily could make you happier than replying to an email or sending a tweet. Besides, you don’t want to walk into a pole for staring down at your screen.

4. Inspiration: Inspiration can come from all walks of life. Try and be open-minded while taking in your surroundings. Don’t get stuck opening Instagram five times in row. Be creative and challenge the way you think. Let your mind wander and your dreams expand. You could feel inspired and motivated just from over hearing or seeing something. Take time off from technology and get inspired!

5. Health: Humans naturally want to interact. Staring at a screen all day is exhausting and unhealthy- mentally and physically. Your eyes start to strain and your fingers start to cramp. Enjoy the little things in life. Technology is developing at a rapid speed and is becoming more intense as we speak. Take advantage of simpler times while they still exist. Don’t depend on your phone to make you less bored or bring excitement into your life. Instead try taking a break from social media. In fact, it can actually increase your self-esteem and happiness!

I was inspired to write this article after reading this quote, “Don’t use social media to impress people, use it to impact people,” by Dave Willis. Many times people are so consumed with what others are doing, instead of focusing on their own well-being. I think it’s extremely important to embrace self love and take a moment to reevaluate what truly matters. Being in-the-moment and embracing your daily interactions can easily bring happiness and a sense of peace. I hope this blog reminds everyone that there is more to life than technology. Remind yourself what’s important and enjoy the life you ACTUALLY live (not say you do on instagram). I hope the next time you’re boarding a plane, out on a walk, or waiting for a friend to meet you at a bar you remember this article!

My last piece of advice comes from my dear friend, Justin Bieber:

“The grass ain’t always greener on the other side, it’s green where you water it.”

Let's Talk Vibes: East vs. West

The word ‘vibe’ has become popularized through various sources of media over the last decade. Kendrick Lamar’s 2012 hit single “Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe” is a prime example of Kendrick creating a connotation of the word. I didn’t initially realize how different the aura was in California compared to New England. After living bi-coastal for five years, however, it has become evident that each coast has its’ own vibe. In this blog I will expose the east and west coast cultural differences from my personal experiences, relationships and travels. The Venn diagram below breaks down my findings.

Growing up in Massachusetts, I became accustomed to the fast-paced lifestyle at a young age – how people walked, talked, drove and displayed their mannerisms seemed accelerated. People were walking with a purpose – as if they had somewhere they needed to be. I think that’s when I learned, ‘time is money.’ No one had time for slow drivers, slow conversations, or hesitation. It wasn’t until I came to the west coast that I experienced the contrast between the coasts. You truly need to be “fast on your feet” to survive the east coast mentality. If not, it can seem intimidating. People say what they mean and mean what they say. I was so entrenched in this idea. I never thought being straight-forward could be seen as negative, but I was in for a culture shock when I came to California.

When arriving in San Diego, I assumed it was normal to speak in a direct manner, use sarcasm to flirt, and walk (& talk) a mile a minute.

FLASHBACK to my first night out at San Diego State University where I met a guy who was basically Chad Michael Murray’s twin. I immediately poked fun at him all night and used my satirical jokes to impress him – showing I had some depth. The night’s coming to an end and just when I think he’s about to ask me out, he announces that he thought I was incredibly rude, and even worse, he didn’t think I was funny.

For the first few years, I felt a disconnect between me and my peers. I felt misunderstood. I had trouble making solid connections and relationships. I knew the importance of first impressions and started feeling uncomfortable when I heard people say, “Don’t mind her, she’s from the east coast.” Was I coming off as rude this whole time? Maybe I wasn’t meant for the west coast and the west coast wasn’t meant for me. 

I wanted to be surrounded by people who got where I was coming from; people who automatically understood my intentions; people who didn’t think I was born with a RBF.

I craved intimate conversations and searched for a code to crack the small talk. I immediately gravitated towards people from the east coast so it’s no surprise that my best friends in college were from there.

People would gawk at us as while we simultaneously held three different conversations going on. Three voices at the same time, and not one word was missed in the mix. Our brains were trained to speak and listen at the same time. It became apparent that people perceived us as obnoxious and over-the-top. “Can’t you guys just chill?”

I once felt the word ‘chill’ carried a negative connotation. I associated it with laziness, being unmotivated, lacking passion, and not caring for much of anything. It wasn’t until my junior year of college that I started understanding the word differently.

Chill meant you didn’t let the negative moments in life affect your entire day. Chill meant you were easy-going and had a calm temperament. Chill meant you enjoyed the simple things in life and always had a reason to smile. After that epiphany, I became more acclimated to the California lifestyle. I found myself becoming more polite, friendly and influenced by everyone’s positive energy- and some might even say, more chill.

“You’re a ‘cali girl’ now,” my friends from Massachusetts kept saying. I had learned how to control my energy and adjust to the atmosphere. I felt a wave of relief when I could finally start calling San Diego my new home. And I realized home isn’t as tangible as I once thought it was. Home isn’t a building with a brown door and welcome mat. Home is where the positive vibes run wild. Home is where your heart longs to be. Home is where the soul is.

The vibes in California are the perfect recipe for happiness; while the vibes on the east coast are the perfect recipe for determination. After five years on the west coast, I can finally say that those two concepts can coexist. Just because my mind feels connected to the east coast, doesn’t mean my heart can’t feel connected to the west. I strongly advise my east coast homies to make a trip out to the west coast and for my west coast fam to travel the beautiful east coast.

Check out this BuzzFeed quiz to find out if you’re more of an east coast or west coast peep! Not surprised, I still got East Coast <3