When quarantine began, we all had to turn to our computers and attend online classes through our college/university, a.ka. Zoom University. Now it’s fall, and for some people, classes are completely online again, which, to put it bluntly, sucks. I’ve been stuck in Sydney, Australia since March 2020, because of the risk of getting coronavirus while traveling. Due to the time difference, I have had to stay up from 10:00 p.m. to 5 a.m. just so I can attend the synchronous online classes that Emmanuel is offering. There are so many students who are doing this same exact thing in various different locations across the world, which means that it can get tiring, and not a lot of people feel motivated. Regardless of where you are in the world, doing classes online can be a struggle and a bit difficult, so it’s important to make sure that you’re taking care of yourself this semester.
- Drink a lot of water
Okay, I know that this is important, and should go without saying, but what I’ve noticed with myself is that as a way to stay up, I’ve been drinking copious amounts of coffee and different forms of caffeine instead of water, which isn’t the best. Make sure that you keep a glass or a bottle of water with you at all times to keep yourself hydrated!
- Take your naps
This one is for all of my international students, and basically, anyone for that matter. Take a nap or catch up on your sleep every chance you get! When I first started college, I HATED naps. The only time I would ever take a nap was when I couldn’t keep my eyes open at all. But now, we are in the middle of a pandemic and sleep is so important. For those of you who have to stay up super late into the night for your classes, it is okay to sleep in as much as you can. I’ve noticed that the less sleep I have, the more unmotivated I feel to do work. When you’re tired you won’t feel motivated to do anything and that’s why sleep, and naps are super important.
- It’s okay to log off
Before this pandemic was a thing, people were struggling to get off of technology and social media. Now, with Zoom University, looking at our computer screens is the last thing we want to do. And girl, that’s okay! If you need to log off or turn off your camera, then do it. If you need to take a day away from all technology, do it. Zoom fatigue is such a real thing and it’s okay to take a minute to yourself. I remember the very first time I stayed up, I was in class, and normally, we had to keep our mics unmuted and our cameras on, if possible, to keep a normal conversation. If we had to leave, we need to mute ourselves and turn our cameras off. I remember turning off my camera just so I could take a 5-minute nap, and then returned, partially refreshed from it. That was something I needed to do to focus during the rest of that class time.
- Take some time for yourself
This might be similar to the previous one, but take some time for yourself, whatever that might be. If you need to take 5 naps within a day, do it. If you need to stop and sit by yourself in a dark room with no distractions, do it. If you need to ask for help or an extension on an assignment, do it. Your professors should definitely be accommodating during this time. If you need to eat an entire bag of popcorn all by yourself at 2:00 a.m. to keep yourself awake, do it. Do what you need to take care of yourself during this pandemic. The work, technology, and virtual socializing with your friends will all be there. Do what you need to do to take care of yourself first because that is what matters before anything else.