When I was on exchange in Helsinki, Finland routines were the best way to ease into a foreign environment. Right from the get-go it was a routine of school, grocery-shopping and regular trips to the gym, as well as weekend trips to various Finnish or European cities, and in the past four or five months – since I started work at a local startup based in Block 71 – I have grown accustomed to a new routine distinct from a school-based one.
The experience in e27 has given me a small glimpse into the startup ecosystem in the region (especially since entrepreneurship has rarely featured as my aspiration or ambition), and these few months with a great team – gelled by a unique company culture – deserve a final reflective piece.
This new routine has been refreshing: over breakfast I go through my news feed and articles in the online newsletters, at work if there are small pockets of time I reply to personal emails (mostly about the UNASMUN training programmes), and on alternative days after work I head to the gym for a run and some strength training for my dislocated shoulder. There is also the occasional meet-up with friends over lunch and dinner. On the weekends the training programmes have become more regular (even before preparation for the December conference commences) and penning posts like a charlatan has become a norm. It has been some time since I have been able to focus on different roles and responsibilities I care for.
And my predilection for these structures persists even though I have no clear idea of what to do in the future. With a clear list of tasks and calendar for the day or week projects can be completed in more rigorous fashion, and in the long run with the routine established it also frees up pockets of time – whenever possible – to explore other engagements too. In this vein when projects are planned it advance it is also possible to assemble teams, plan timelines for these commitments, and make accommodations for possible challenges or pitfalls.
While the time in e27 has been great the next chapter in August – leaving the business school behind and starting my public policy studies – is something to look forward to. When the semester comes I am sure a routine will also be crafted, and it will be no less exciting.