It’s that time of the year again -- school is back in session. School on its own is hard enough, but now classes are online, which means that studying and staying focused is a lot more difficult. Learning feels a lot more lonely without friends by your side, and the motivation and productivity drop to an all-time low.
We know it’s hard learning how to adapt to this challenging time, especially when the pandemic and everything else going on in the world have us staying in our own homes all day. You might not particularly enjoy coming back to live with your family 24/7, you might miss spending quality time with your friends, or maybe you want to travel and explore -- but you can’t because everything’s still on lockdown. We get it, and we relate entirely.
Since this is such an unprecedented and difficult time, we want you to stay well both physically and mentally. That’s why we put together a list of tips you can use at home to improve your mental health, stimulate productivity, and keep you physically healthy. We’re all trapped inside our own homes, but that doesn’t mean we don’t want to help each other where we can! ♡
1. Go outside
Going for a walk is a simple yet effective way to keep your body active and your brain healthy. Studies show that some exercise and fresh air can reduce levels of stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol in your body. Additionally, exercise can also stimulate the production of endorphins, which are your body’s natural pain-killers and can help improve your overall mood. If you live in a busy neighborhood and you feel like coming into close contact with other people isn’t a good idea, no worries! Spending time in any outdoor space, like your backyard, and meditating or relaxing has plenty of benefits as well! Sunlight can help your body get the Vitamin D (vital for maintaining healthy bones and allows the intestines to stimulate and absorb and reclaim calcium) it needs, and the fresh air can help your heart, brain, and lungs function properly.
2. Dress up!
Getting out of your pajamas and getting dressed for the day can help you build a solid routine by establishing a set beginning and end to your work day. While your pajamas are more meant for sleeping and lazing around, dressing up in work clothes will make you feel more productive and work-oriented. On top of that, don’t be afraid to take the extra step to make yourself look cute, whether that means doing your makeup, doing your hair, or wearing something extra pretty. You might think, because you have no plans, there’s no reason to dress up, but just remember that you’re making yourself look cute for yourself; not anybody else. So throw on some Doe Lashes, take a couple selfies, and remind yourself that you are the baddest in town!
3. Don't do work in your bed
To maximize productivity and keep yourself motivated, keep work and relaxation separate! That means getting up and sitting at your desk when you have work to do. If you have another room that lets you focus, that’s even better! Create a personal boundary for yourself and only rest or sleep in your bed.
4. Take Screen breaks
School is online, work is online, and it seems like most of our lives have now become almost entirely online. While it may seem like the only thing you can do now is use your phone to scroll the for you page on TikTok or use your laptop to watch Korean dramas on Netflix, remember to give your eyes a break from the screen. Too much screen-time will definitely hurt your eyes! It could lead to dry eyes or headaches.
5. Keep in touch with friends
If your love languages are physical touch and quality time, you’re probably having the time of your life right now (not really). In all seriousness though, it’s okay to feel lonely sometimes, especially during a time like this when everybody’s staying home and nobody’s going out. That doesn’t mean you can’t still keep in touch with your friends. In this day and age, technology and social media have made it that easy to keep in touch with friends and family. Reach out to your loved ones whenever you need emotional support. At the same time, make sure to check on them to see if they need anything from you too!
6. Plan out your days
Planning out your days using an agenda planner or calendar is a great way to keep yourself organized as the days fly by. Keeping track of important dates, events, and deadlines will help with time management. It will help you stay focused through visualizing and prioritizing your responsibilities.
7. Reflect on your days using a journal
A reflective diary or journal or whatever you want to call it can benefit your mental health in several different ways. Writing down your daily thoughts, feelings, and highlights will help you focus on the positives of your day. This practice can also encourage you to jot down all of the things racing through your head so that you can have a clearer mind at the end of each day. In doing so, you’ll feel a lot more happier with each day that goes by, as well as relaxed and focused when it’s time for bed.
8. Bad Days are OK
It’s okay to have non-productive days. Don’t beat yourself up after spending an entire day sleeping and scrolling TikTok. Some days you might not have that much to do, or you might not be feeling it -- that’s completely normal, especially right now. Let yourself take the time you need to relax so you can be more productive on a different day. Don’t forget to take care of yourself by drinking enough water, getting plenty of rest, and eating healthy.
9. Sleep, Sleep, Sleep
Having a consistent sleep schedule plays a big role in maintaining good physical and mental health. That means waking up at around the same time every day (typically when it’s bright outside) and going to sleep around the same time everyday (typically when it’s dark outside). We feel the need to specify because we’ve seen how being locked inside our homes for the past 6 months has led to many people losing track of time and developing nocturnal sleep schedules. To be as healthy and productive as possible, not only should you make sure you get enough rest, but also make sure that you’re sleeping at normal times. Keeping a consistent sleep schedule (where you sleep at night and wake up in the morning) will do wonders for your body, brain, and overall health.
We know that this is a super-duper stressful time that’s hard to adapt to, but we hope that this list of tips will help you learn how to cope with the loneliness and difficulty of being forced to stay in your own homes. Just know that you’re not alone -- there’s plenty of other people out there going through the same things that you are! So while taking care of yourself is important, remember to take care of your loved ones as well!
And just a final little reminder: drink water! Being productive and maintaining your mental health are important, but neither of those would be possible if you aren’t hydrated. Eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day is the bare minimum, so drink up, lovelies! ♡