Dear reader, I hope you are coping well with the major shift to your daily routine. However, please don’t despair! This event will be one we will be talking about for years and certainly one which will be noted in history. This virus has given many of us the opportunity to explore passions that we truly love but have been neglecting all of our lives and so we should be immensely grateful for the opportunity.
In terms of disruption to normality, if you are a student or an employee working from home and trying to adapt to this new normal, do not be anxious or scared due to the unknown. Rather be #proud because you are pushing yourself, you are waking up everyday, you are utilising the wonderful resources most academic and work institutions have developed and you can do it.
For students, if you have been working extremely hard for the past year or two and now your exams are cancelled, please don’t worry. Tests can sometimes be subjective and can not actually determine your way of thinking in terms of deep thoughts and intellect but rather puts you in a corner. At times you are only tested to see how good your memory is or just to tick another box.
If you are an employee who has been working immensely hard so that you get some sort of promotion perhaps reevaluate whether you want that promotion. Perhaps you can put in the extra effort to make changes for yourself or really fine tune your skills further.
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Give yourself the opportunity to really learn yourself, try to decipher the things that make you happy and make amazing new memories.
Here are a 11 things I would suggest in order to maintain some form of normality and to help you strive in the current situation:
1. Learn something new
Learn something you are passionate about- Read books about the topic, watch a video on YouTube, read some articles or search on the great world wide web. Many of us use the excuse of time to justify why we don’t pursue our #passions, but now we have plenty of time. Let’s try to use some of this time to chase our #dreams.
2. Keep doing what you have been doing
Keep working on your studies or work tasks – if you are delaying things look at techniques such as the Pomodoro effect in order to reduce most people’s nemesis “procrastination”.
The Pomodoro technique works in a manner whereby one divides an hour or two into smaller more manageable chunks of 25 minutes followed by a 5 minute break. This way, you are able to complete tasks fully without being distracted and without having to procrastinate by putting things off. This technique has been my go-to for years during my time as an undergraduate; I remember the many times where I would struggle immensely to get myself to actually do any work and would end up stressed at the last minute as a deadline loomed closer.
I still use this technique as my current job involves completing bid applications which usually have strict deadlines to adhere to. By sticking with this method I am able to complete tasks much more effectively and those small 5 minute breaks works as a great incentive thus ensuring I am much more productive.
3. Understand the learner you are or understand how you work best
Try to understand the sort of learner you are, think of your future #goals– assess the skills you already have and work on the skills you need for the future. Students make a document of all the amazing things you have accomplished over the years during your school studies. You will thank yourself later when you have to write your resume!
4. Gratitude reflection
Be #mindful to ward off negative thoughts- I have been implementing gratitude reflections on a daily basis. Maybe you can do the same? Note down at least one thing you are #grateful for daily. This is such an amazing thing to implement into your lives. I have seen #positivity in my own life just because of this wonderful act of noting down these #reflections in my life.
Connect with like minded individuals for that extra push or support and reach out to loved ones. Since I have decided to embark on this blogging journey, I have met and come across some really amazing individuals and I am forever grateful for it. The community definitely pushes me to produce better quality content. A good thing students could do is having a zoom or google hangouts meeting with a couple of friends who you work well with in order to create a sort of library setting. This way you don’t feel isolated whilst studying and you can make your study sessions less mundane.
Go for a walk or a jog- whatever floats your boat. It’s important to make sure your body is moving!! As we all know, exercise is good for both your body and mind. Unfortunately I need to work on increasing my exercise habits- I am currently trying my best to do some form of exercise for at least 5 minutes daily.
7. Change up your environment
If you find yourself studying or working in your room for the majority of the day, switch it up and work at the dining table or outside in the garden or balcony. Sometimes I sit on the table to do my work and at times I literally lie on the sofa with my laptop, as long as I am being #productive and comfortable.
8. Try to stick to a routine
I am not too strict with my routines and I find that I work best when I have a to-do list for all the tasks I need to accomplish. However, I just can’t deal with formal timetables as I prefer switching things up otherwise I am demotivated. So it’s best if you find out what times you work best or are more productive.
For many of us we will have to be working around our families so make sure to take that into consideration, it’s difficult but hopefully we can work around this and actually cherish these moments.
An important thing to always remember is not to be too strict on yourself! On those days when you feel overwhelmed, don’t ignore your feelings. We’re all going through a tough time and it is so important to make sure your mental health is in check (Check out my blog post for more tips on dealing with anxiety during quarantine).
9. Social media detox
I know many of us are constantly on our phones scrolling for hours through social media, and sometimes a few minutes will turn into a couple of hours! Imagine the time you could be using to do productive things.
Allocate an hour or two weekly where you completely switch off your phone and enjoy the little things in life. I try to do this on a daily basis but since I started blogging, I am having to constantly check my phone, connect and network and promote my blogs meaning I’m on my phone a little too much! I hope that once I get the hang of this I will be able to develop a healthy relationship with my screen time.
Destress and bake a cookie, cake or even a meringue and then indulge and enjoy it with a cup of tea or coffee! Everyone’s inner chef has come out during quarantine so why not make some sort of competition between your loved ones as to who can come up with the most creative bake. I have been enjoying my time in the kitchen even more than ever and I love how it allows me to totally forget about any pending work and stress whilst I bake and create indulgent food.
11. Set new goals
Set yourself some goals, start with a monthly, then quarterly and even a yearly plan. Maybe create a vision board to go with it if you haven’t already.
I am pushing myself during my time at home so that I fully utilise my time because nothing comes easy and hard work and determination is what yields results.
Let’s use this time to work on ourselves and really reflect on the path we want to take or changes we want to make in our lives.
As per usual these tips and suggestions are based on my own opinions and are things that I have tried myself and I still am doing as a mum of 3 trying to juggle it all.
Thank you soo much once again for actually taking the time to read my blog. If you do have any further suggestions please do leave a comment below. I hope these tips would come in handy for some of you if not 10 people at least 1 person benefiting would be amazing!