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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Western chapter.

Being a student is already time-consuming. With online school, our time commitment has become overwhelming. Professors expect us to work 24/7, making students feel extremely drained. Personally, I wake up and sit on my laptop for at least 10 hours every day. While I do take breaks for cooking, walking or just talking to a friend, similarly to other students, I don’t feel satisfied. 

Finishing an assignment no longer gives me the same sense of relief it once did. When I manage to finish an assignment all I do is add a checkmark to a tiny square of an already massive to-do list. Things I used to do as a reward, such as watching a movie, ordering food or reading, no longer bring me the same joy; instead, I’m left with a sense of boredom. After some self-reflection, I soon realized that I needed to make myself feel accomplished in different ways to avoid my days melding together. If you’ve felt anything like I’ve described, read the three daily rituals that make me feel fulfilled during online school. 

1. 5-4-Me 

At the end of the long day staring at your laptop, it can be hard to think about all you’ve accomplished. At the end of your day, take five whole uninterrupted minutes to write down everything you did. This includes how much water you drank, the food you ate, if you took a shower, etc. List down your tasks and accomplishments from the time you woke up. Then, take some highlighters and four unfiltered minutes to go through your list and highlight how many things you did for work in one colour, school in another and lastly, things you did for yourself. Some days you may do more things for yourself while others you may do a lot of school work; having a visual representation of your day can make you realize your accomplishments. No day was wasted if you chose what was right for you. 

2. Take care of my plants

Owning plants can be hard as a student but worthwhile. To have something that provides oxygen can give you the extra boost you’re looking for. By introducing certain plants into your home, you will start to notice improvements to your health and overall happiness. They improve concentration and productivity, reduce stress levels and boost your mood. Even if you aren’t the best at watering your plants, cacti exist that require little to no effort. 

3. Go for a run 

As a person who never worked out before online school, I can confidently say this has been mood changing. Not only does running make me sleep better, but it also helps me release any anxiety or stress I feel about the day. As someone who gets fairly anxious, running has allowed me to release that energy and feel healthy as well. Don’t get me wrong, the physical act of running hurts but I find I now crave that time to just listen to my music and let go. 

With online school, it’s easy to get stuck in your head and space. The act of moving, reflecting and letting yourself take a break can make the biggest difference. These tips are based on my personal experiences and I hope they can help you too. Remember to drink water!

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Netanya Thomas is a third year student studying Media and the Public Interest at the University of Western Ontario. She is passionate about issues surrounding mental health, women's rights around the world and storytelling. Through her work, Netanya aspires to make a difference in people's lives while working towards issues she's passionate about. Overall, she believes a good story has the power to empower people and make us realize the new complexities of life.
Disha Rawal

Western '21

Disha is a fourth year student pursuing an Honours Specialization in Neuroscience. She has been on Her Campus Western's editorial team for the past two years. This year, she is one of the chapter's Campus Correspondents. In her free time, Disha enjoys journaling, painting and watching Youtube videos.