Studying from home has never been the easiest for some of us and studying during lockdown can feel even harder. Keeping motivated and engaged with learning and self-study can feel impossible but here are a couple of tips that might help you during this lockdown.
Designate a place to study
When working at home it can be very hard to engage with learning and you might find yourself surrounded by distractions and things that seem much more fun than studying. You also may find it hard to disconnect from the work when you’re trying to relax, this is why it is important to designate somewhere in your house as the place you go to study.
Try to sit at a desk or table away from your sleeping or relaxing space, avoid working in your bed or on your sofa, not only is this better for your neck and spine but also helps you relax when you go to bed at night as it’s not been a place of stress for you during the day. Make sure your study space is well-lit to avoid getting headaches and straining your eyes when working. Have all of the necessary equipment on hand ready to be used, that could mean your laptop, charger, notepad, stationery and make sure you have a glass of water to stay hydrated throughout the day. Try to leave your phone or other distractions out of sight unless you need them to study, you don’t want to check TikTok for 5 minutes and then come away from your phone an hour later without having completed the jobs you wanted to do.
Find the perfect playlist
A lot of people find it hard to work in silence or are easily distracted with outside sounds, so have something on in the background can be a good option. Music might not help everyone, you may prefer podcasts, radio or even whale sounds, do whatever works for you and create the best soundscape for your brain to be it’s most functional.
The playlists below are my go-to, and the great thing about them is they’re mostly instrumental which helps me focus on what I’m doing and stops me from singing along very badly to my favourite songs. Try a couple of different playlists or mix and match to make your own.
Set a time to study outside of your lessons
When life is as chaotic as it is at the moment it can be hard to focus on anything other than what’s right in front of you, but creating a schedule and giving yourself some kind of routine can be really helpful when studying at home. As soon as you know you what your weekly lesson schedule looks like, why not try to write yourself a timetable making sure to include time for food, breaks and fun.
If you schedule enough time to study and work during the week you can leave your weekends free to relax and enjoy as you see fit. Getting up earlier and going to sleep earlier can help with your mental health and the capacity you have to take in information.
Take regular breaks
Sitting at your desk for eight hours a day is no good for your body and forcing yourself to focus on a task for too long won’t make you any more productive, it’s important to take breaks from work and also from sitting at your desk. It is recommended that you walk around for five minutes every hour, but if you can’t manage to find the time, try to schedule 30 minutes to an hour every day for some form of light exercise. Take a walk outside, do some yoga or find other ways to get your heart rate up. Check out the video below by our Sports Programme Lead Michelle about how to keep fit during lockdown.
Set realistic goals that you want to achieve
Making long ‘to do’ lists can cause stress and overwhelm you, so why not try setting three goals that you would like to achieve per day. If you don’t manage to finish all three, add whichever you didn’t complete to the top of tomorrows list and work in manageable chunks so you don’t get bogged down with work.
Reach out for help if you need it
We know that lockdown can be a very lonely time, and working from home isn’t easy but you are not alone in feeling like this. If you are struggling with coursework, why not reach out to your classmates or teacher? Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Everybody wants you to succeed and you should never be ashamed to ask for help, especially right now.
If you are struggling with your mental health and don’t know who to turn to, speak to our welfare team, they’re here to help you and want to make this as easy and stress-free as possible.
If you’re not a student or are looking for other free and inclusive resources check out the links below.