Navigating School Life from Home

 

Like most of the college students out there today, I am also stuck at home with online classes. But besides having the added stress of having everything online, I’m also in a household with three other people all doing their own thing as well. Now I love being home as much as the next person, especially because I am a home body, but I’d spent my first two and a half years of college in a dorm on campus, having found places and ways to get things done and not having to worry about anyone else. 

But this is not my dorm, and this is not my campus. 

Now I’m not writing this as a disgruntled student who’s been severely inconvenienced, but it’s definitly a hard time. Not only do I have to find a spot to do my work that works for me, but I have to take into consideration my surrounding environment. If I’m on a Zoom call for class or a meeting is the noise from the kitchen going to interfere or will I be bothering a parent who’s working from home? Is the coffee table in my living room really the best place to set up for three or four hours or will there be too many distractions? Will my room work even though I don’t have a desk or set up workspace? There’s so many things to consider. 

Then there’s the actual work time. Now if anyone reading this is similar to me in any way, then homework and even doing notes and the like, gets done probably after sunset. I am a night owl and for me, working at night it the best time. But the schedule my parents have set up doesn’t always coincide with mine. Living on my own dinner was whenever I decided to make, if I even wanted to. I didn’t confine myself to certain work hours as I had hours upon hours to get things done and I wasn’t needing to have a set schedule for when I was going to be doing anything. But now I have to. I have to have some kind of idea of when I’ll be doing my homework or working on class notes or having video chat meetings. My parents want to know. Mainly so they can kind of stay out of my way when I might be doing these things. But for me this is hard. I can’t always give them a set time for when I’ll be doing things, I can’t tell them if I’ll be getting together with people, I can’t always lay out my day and sometimes that cause more stress for all of us. 

This set up causes tension. It causes stress. It causes unwanted fighting and bickering. 

But there are ways around this and communication with those around you, be it family, friends or roommates, is key. 

While keeping everyone up to date, 24/7, is nearly impossible, giving the people around you some kind of schedule to go off of is better than giving them nothing at all. That’s really the only way I’ve gotten through this so far. My parents have come to understand that while I am be home and not living on campus that nothing really has changed. I still hole myself up in my room when I do my work because being somewhere where there is too much stimulation means nothing gets done. I still work later at night, most of the time opting to do class notes and lectures that were previously recorded after dinner and sometimes even after they’ve gone to bed. I sometimes won’t eat dinner with them if I’m working on something or have a meeting set up. 

It’s a serious learning curve. There are a lot of hoops to jump through for everyone involved. There is a lot of questions to ask and boundaries to learn. But try your hardest not to get frustrated (although sometimes it is hard) because you’re not the only one in the house who may be going crazy. Most of all don’t forget to enjoy the time at home (or wherever you may be) because although the situation at this time isn’t great at least we are surround by family and friends to get us through it. 

Stay safe. Stay Healthy. And kick this semesters butt.