As we all know by now, there is a little thing called the COVID-19 pandemic underway. As a global society, we have been forced to flee to our homes and keep our doors locked for fear of spreading this potentially fatal virus. It seems that almost all spheres of life have migrated to the online realm. Business meetings as well as parties are happening via zoom and we have all discovered the wonders of online shopping.
Academia has not been left behind in this shift; university spaces across the world now find themselves operating remotely as technology allows us to remain in constant communication. Albeit fortunate that this is possible, studying from home certainly falls short of the university experience and when not done properly, it can be a disconnected and disheartening journey.
Have a Dedicated Working Space
It is important that the space in which you work and learn is separated as much as possible from other areas in your home. Physically dividing your study space from places where you relax or socialise helps to create associations of concentration and this ultimately helps you to learn more efficiently.
Ensure your desk is decluttered and that you have a comfortable chair. If possible, try to work at a desk that is not in your bedroom. Find a quiet space in your house or, if this proves impossible due to the activity and noise of other house members, you can use the local library your dedicated working space.
The importance of physical activity cannot be stressed enough – especially when you are studying from home. It does not matter so much what you do as much as it does that you stick to a routine and do something. Aim for 45 minutes of cardiovascular exercise every day and if you are able to, do this outside to ensure that you are getting your daily dose of fresh air.
Not only does exercise burn off excess energy thus keeping you in shape and confident, it enhances your natural concentration and boosts serotonin which is that much desired ‘feel good’ hormone.
Prioritise Eating Well
Proper nourishment is as important as exercise when it comes to maintaining your mental and physical wellbeing. Ensure that you are eating an adequate amount of protein and fresh fruit and vegetables. Food is known to significantly influence your ability to concentrate deeply for prolonged periods of time. Try to see meal-prep and cooking as a fun and rewarding task – it can be a great study break.
When there is nothing particularly exciting or pleasurable to punctuate your days of learning from home, it is easy to feel demotivated and give up altogether. Set goals for yourself and when achieved, treat yourself to something special like some time.
This may be ordering a meal from your favourite restaurant, going to a movie, or purchasing a new pair of shoes – find what motivates you and incorporate it into your long-term study plan.