It’s safe to say that this school year has been a wild ride. Whether you’re learning from home – goodbye, uniform; hello, comfy clothes – or still attending school, chances are you’re feeling a little uneasy about everything that’s going on.
Staying on top of your studies can be hard enough at the best of times, but the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis has thrown in a few extra curveballs. Balancing assignment deadlines, exam prep and a new way of learning can all add up to a pretty stressful situation. Not to mention that learning from home = so many distractions.
But while you might feel stressed and distracted, making a few key changes will help you to stay on track.
Set up a reward system
One of the hardest things about focusing on your studies at home is sidestepping the many distractions and temptations that are on offer there. Who wouldn’t find it easier to escape into an eight-hour streamed series when you’ve hit a wall with your studies, rather than push through it? But instead of denying yourself all distractions, try a work-and-reward system. For each hour of study, you could reward yourself with something: an episode of your fave show, an online game, or a FaceTime call with friends.
Sharing is caring
Sometimes a natural reaction to stress is to switch off, shut down and tap out, by turning off your notifications and pretending that whatever is going on simply doesn’t exist. This is especially true with the current global crisis (when all anyone can talk about is coronavirus), when pulling away from your pals and going AWOL might sound like a good idea. But in times of stress, whether it’s school-related or otherwise, talking to people is typically the best way forward. Give your friends a chance to lend a hand by letting them know what’s up with you. If they’re aware that you’re having a tough time and aren’t travelling so well, they’ll check in with you more often.
Love the list
Every school student knows that their brain is busiest JUST as they switch out the lights and try to fall asleep. All of a sudden, their mind is overcome by worries, concerns and thoughts, and sleep seems like a distant possibility. This is particularly true if they’re feeling anxious or nervous about an upcoming exam or assignment. Take back control by writing a checklist before going to bed of things you need to do, and things you’re worried about. Putting them down on paper is a smart way to make big problems seem a little more manageable.
There is no better way to buy time than by creating jobs that require your immediate attention: My assignment will have to wait because I MUST organise my bookshelves in alphabetical order! While a tidy workspace will help you to focus and concentrate – both of which are important for study/school – don’t get sucked into the trap of spending all day arranging and rearranging your desk. Try to pick an area to work that has some natural light, and set up a space that is calming and free of clutter.
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