I would be lying if I said I was excited to go into my Fall 2020 Sophmore Year at NYU. In reality, I am not exactly at NYU. While I could have chosen to take the semester off, I plan to graduate on time, and for that reason, I knew that a semester at Zoom University would just have to be the answer for the time being. The first two weeks have been a bit of a shock to my system in terms of getting in the “back to school” mentality as I have been on vacation mode for a long time. Even worse, attending school only three feet from the comfort of my own bed has not been as easy as it sounds. However, a couple of days ago, I made the executive decision to buckle down and do what I can from home to stay motivated for the upcoming semester. Here are some things that I do to stay motivated for this online semester.
Create a Working Environment
The first problem that I faced when entering the new school year is that I didn’t really have a place to be “in the zone.” For the remainder of last semester, I did most of my work from a small desk in the corner of my room that was cluttered with my beauty and hair products and my jewelry. Needless to say, it wasn’t exactly the cleanest. Working from that particular space reminded me of how easily distracted I can be if I am not in the right headspace. Moving into this semester, I realized location is absolutely key.
For this reason, I decided to create my own mini office space in the guest bedroom. While it did take a lot of convincing of my parents, I was able to put a nice sized desk in the room with a lot of storage space. I set up the desk nicely with all the things I once had on my NYU desk to convince my brain that I am ready to work whenever I sit down at my desk. Thus far, the implementation of a desk far from my bed has been very successful!
2. Stay Organized
One thing I can’t live without is organization and a set plan. When I was at school, I would list everything I needed to do each day and would check it off as I went. While at home, it is easy to feel like the time passes so quickly with so many distractions being available. However, this week I set up a daily schedule assigning myself a time to do homework, attend classes, workout, and go to work so that I never feel overwhelmed and like I don’t have control. In these times of chaos, I often find myself checking out and avoiding all my problems completely which leads to even more stress. It is for these reasons that I highly suggest staying organized rather than letting everything pile up.
A small investment I just made in order to keep up with the planning is a small whiteboard and a variety of markers. I love to color code and make my calendar super colorful. Having this color-coordinated calendar has definitely kept me on top of everything and has allowed me to stay motivated and focused for the semester.
3. Treat yourself!
The last way that I keep myself motivated through this online school time is by treating myself whenever I have hit a goal or milestone. For instance, last week, I made it through and turned in all my assignments on time and worked six days of the week. As a result, I gave myself Saturday off to spend with my family. Another way I love to reward myself is with food (specifically ice cream)! I think it is super important to have something to look forward to, especially during a time that is not exactly exciting for most of us. It is also a super healthy thing to reward yourself for all your hard work by participating in some form of self-care.
Whichever one of these tactics that you choose, I hope they motivate you the same way they did for me. I wish you the best of the luck in this upcoming semester whether online or in person!