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By Desi Pasheva

Tips on staying sane while studying at home during a global pandemic

April 23, 2020

Our day-to-day lives have all been affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. Students globally are now adapting to home studying having had their lectures moved online. Staying sane in the midst of everything going on in the world right now, whilst getting used to studying from home, can seriously affect mental wellbeing and it’s very easy to fall into the trap of having negative thoughts. At times like these it may seem impossible to adopt a positive mindset and attitude to learning but now, more than ever, it’s crucial to look after mental wellbeing and stay as healthy as possible, both physically and emotionally. In this blog, we’ll share some tips on how to stay sane and look after your wellbeing while studying at home.

1. Stick to a schedule that suits you

It goes without saying that it’s crucial to attend your online lectures and seminars. But when it comes to studying individually, things can get a little trickier as concentration can easily fall by the wayside. This can quickly turn into procrastination – the very familiar to all students act of delaying important tasks for later while prioritising leisure activities. We’ve all done it, and are familiar with the anxiety and guilt that strikes a day before our assignment is due… To avoid this,  and make sure work gets done, create a schedule that suits you best and stick to it. Pay attention to how you feel throughout the day and identify the time when you’re most focused. By doing this, you’d be able to set aside specific hours for studying when your concentration is at its peak, which, in turn, will increase your productivity! Use anything that would assist you with sticking to your schedule such as using a planner, setting reminders or using sticky notes. Put your phone aside to avoid social media distractions and focus on the tasks at hand. Plan your schedule the night before and be sure to revisit it in the morning so that you have a clear pattern set out for the day ahead. This would avoid the unnecessary stress brought on by not knowing where to start.

2. Make time for the things you love

You’d be surprised to know how many things you can do from home. Most things you’d even be able fit in your study breaks which are a clever way of getting some movement in. As unappealing as it may sound, why not organise your wardrobe or clear up your study space? Decluttering is known to boost productivity and creativity while reducing feelings of anxiety. Not having access to a gym is not an excuse to skip exercise. With numerous tutorials online you can easily fit in yoga or training from home without the need for equipment. Physical activity has been proved to boost the immune system and improve brain function which helps with memory retention! If you like cooking, now is the time to experiment with a new healthy recipe. At times like these, it’s crucial to look after your immune system so make sure you get those nutrients in – your mood and brain will thank you later. If you’re not a cook fanatic, why not learn a new skill? With many free online courses you can choose anything from web design, programming, foreign languages, you name it – the more your brain stays engaged the less time you spend focusing on negative thoughts.

3. Get fresh air

Getting fresh air boosts healthy brain functioning and clarity and can still be done safely as long as you keep within the current government guidelines. Whether it’s a mindful walk or a quick run around the block, getting your joints moving increases serotonin – a chemical that contributes to happiness and well-being! It’s understandable that you may not be able to exercise outside but that doesn’t mean you should deprive yourself of fresh air. Simply keeping the windows open throughout the day gets fresh air circulating around the house which is sure to reduce feelings of drowsiness and will keep you going with your studies. Spend time in the garden (if you have one) during your break to get some sunshine which is another mood booster – use your imagination!

These are just a few of the tips that would help your sanity during the lockdown period. There are many other activities you can do to improve your mood and help you stay positive during lockdown, such as staying in touch with friends and family via video calls, reading books, creative writing or picking up a new hobby. The main idea is to keep your mind and body occupied and be grateful for each day. Make the most of this time and don’t beat yourself up too much if some days you just lack motivation – own your feelings and move on. By the time this is over, you’ll have become a much better version of yourself!

 

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