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Almost a week ago, I started self-quarantining in my humble hometown in Massachusetts.

It has not been too bad yet. I say yet because I am a professionally trained introvert, and I like my alone time in my room. My stepsister, on the other hand, is not taking this social distancing as well as I am. Gosh, extroverts are so needy. (Note – I’m kidding… not really.)

Don’t get me wrong – I would much rather be in North Carolina right now, but this is how things are, for the time being.

I have been writing, playing with Photoshop and walking maybe twice a day to pass the time. I have also been preparing to start online classes, which involves thinking of a new day-to-day schedule and other productive things I can do.

I’m a little scared to do school at home because home translates to relaxing and sleep. I’m sure all college students have had this thought run through their minds during this apocalypse:

How the hell am I supposed to concentrate or get anything done?

Don’t worry – this just means we have to fill our days with productive activities to help our minds concentrate better when it does come time to attend class via Zoom.

Here are some activities I thought would be a good start.

Declutter one area everyday

A clean room encourages a clear mind, in my experience. I’m not telling you to clean your entire house or even your entire room, just one space, whether that be your desk, your closet, the space behind your bed or maybe even your bathroom. Just declutter, put things away.

Make a list of everything you need to do tomorrow

College students are now forced to change their routines. Write down your new routine, before you go to bed. Your mind will be at ease and will not be stressed about skipping something you need to do.

Actually get ready for the day

It would be so easy to keep your sweats on and do schoolwork in your bed, but you are going to be more productive if you actually put on clothes, even if that means leggings and a sweatshirt. Brush your teeth and wash your face. If you want to put on makeup, do it.

Don’t do work in your room

Again, my mind equates my room and my bed with sleep and watching YouTube in bed. Naturally, I won’t do my best work while sitting in my room, let alone my bed. Go to another room or, if it’s warm enough, go outside!

Learn during your downtime

My amazing RA, Katie, gave me advice I will carry with me, this year. Fill every hour of your day with something productive, even if that means taking a nap. Don’t just mindlessly scroll through Instagram, Twitter, etc. Watch TED Talks, listen to podcasts or learn how to do something new!

To my fellow college students, finish the year strong, despite being home.

To everyone reading this, wash your hands and take care of yourselves! We will get through this.

Jackie Sizing

Chapel Hill '21

Hello! My name is Jackie Sizing, and I am a junior at UNC-Chapel Hill. I enjoy writing about pop culture, lifestyle, and food!
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