The Complete Guide to Staying Productive in Self-Isolation

Student Life

Being in self-isolation can sometimes be tricky, and it can indeed bring your motivation levels very down. It is quite hard to study for that mid-unit test or catch up on your online classes when all you want to do is snuggle under the covers and watch Netflix. Having said that, here are a few tips and tricks that may motivate you to make the most of this time in self-isolation:

1) Follow your normal timetable

This may sound boring, but trust me, it will help you. For instance, if you have English class at 8.00 am  on a typical school day, then make sure you wake up slightly before to 'attend' the class virtually. 

Following your normal timetable will also enable you to maintain the productivity you have in a school setting!

2) Create your own study space

If you want to stay motivated, your study area has to be clean and organized. There is no use in trying to work in a messy area, for that will only discourage you! I suggest lighting candles and putting some soft music to calm you down so that you are ready for some intense productivity. 

The picture below illustrates perfectly what I mean by creating your own study space- it is not cluttered and it is amazingly organized!                                        

3) Give yourself some time off

Being stuck at home constantly may undoubtedly blur the days together, however, you need to remember that you must take each day one at a time. Accept the days as they come and remember to look after your mental and physical well-being. 

Remember: Taking a day off after a long day of school work can only be productive, and it will surely motivate you to do better the following day. You will feel refreshed and relaxed. So take that hot chocolate and watch a movie after a long day!

4) Change things up a bit

No matter how important it is to create your own study space, you cannot work at the same desk for the following days to come. Be adventurous, and maybe try the dining table downstairs. Or, if you do have a garden, take a picnic cloth and just lay on the grass while reading or doing some homework.

Trust me, a change of space will only do good for you! 

5) Reward yourself

The trick to being motivated is to have small yet substantial treats to fall on once you have accomplished a major task or something that you had difficulty doing but finally did. Rewarding yourself can range from reading a really book or eating some sweets -- it all depends on what you like and what you enjoy doing.

An example of a treat is buying yourself some doughnuts after deep cleaning your room. Your motivation was maintained throughout the tasks of cleaning your room because you knew that soon enough, you would get to have some chocolate doughnuts.

6) Be active

If you are physically active, you will undoubtedly be mentally active.

Not only will your body be stimulated, but your brain too. Even when you are stuck at home, it is crucial to remember to maintain physical activity. Not only will this act as a break from your other work, but it will enable you to put some of the stress you might be feeling. 

Physical activity, when stuck inside, acts as an outlet, enabling you to dispense some of your energy so that you can still be motivated when it comes to your schoolwork.

Below I have attached a picture illustrating a couple of exercises you can do at home. These can be done anywhere-literally. You might want to try them on your bathroom floor or in your garden, it is up to you.

Remember: When working out, make sure you are taking all precautions to avoid harm or injury.

7) Talk to others

I cannot stress this enough. Remember that whenever you are feeling disheartened or discouraged, you are not the only one feeling like so. Many more people are in the same boat as you, and so it is crucial that you connect with them.

For instance, keep in touch with your school friends if you aren't already and make sure you set up frequent FaceTime with them. This will keep you motivated, for you will begin to forget that you are stuck at home and instead resume your daily routine as normal. 

8) Find joy in the little things

This is ever so important, even if you are stuck at home. Take a deep breath, and tell yourself that you have got this. Tell yourself that all will be good and that all will fall into place eventually. Tell yourself some positive affirmations that give you hope and confidence.

For me, I like to find happiness in my daily routine. For instance, when I am making my usual morning coffee, I like to appreciate the smell of coffee and I like to have fun choosing my mug.

Although this may sound weird, it is ever so important to find joy in the things that seem very mundane.

Staying at home constantly may feel tiring and perhaps even discouraging. But remember that you are doing it for a just cause and that you are helping the rest of the world by staying home.

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Ines Sahib

Ines Sahib is an avid reader who finds solace in all things related to literature and caffeine. Although she is currently a full time student, she enjoys writing and aspires to achieve a career in journalism later on. Currently, she is studying for her A-levels in England.

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