While it’s been over a year since we had to shift to distant learning, it’s pretty understandable that many of us are still finding ways to adjust better and become more productive while getting used to new routines. It’s challenging to keep your mind on work mode when no kids are in sight and the school feels entirely different.
Thus, here are eight things you can do to keep yourself motivated and boost your productivity during distant learning!
Start your days right
Create a morning routine that would wake you up and prepare you for the day–whether it’s as simple as cooking your favourite meal for breakfast, doing a 30-minute workout, taking a shower, or playing with your pet. Doing such things as soon as you wake up can revitalise your spirit and make you feel more ready for your classes!
Remember: Your mood and energy can influence your students’ so you must face them on Zoom with the zeal and preparedness to learn and teach something new!
Create a schedule and stick to it
Part of improving your routines has a schedule you can commit to. It also helps you mentally prepare yourself for the things you’ll have to accomplish for the day.
You can use your smartphone’s memos, a physical planner, or apps like Friday and Timetable. It’d also help to plan your week so you can easily track your availability for sudden meetings or activities.
Free your desk from clutter
“When our space is a mess, so are we.” (Sander)
In a Harvard Business Review article, Libby Sander reminds us to be mindful of our clutter. According to Sander, a study shows that people who are “…overwhelmed by the amount of stuff in their homes were more likely to procrastinate.” And this very much applies to our office or workspace as well!
Having a clean and organised one can lessen our stress and help us think clearer. So don’t hesitate to free your desk of the things you don’t need or, in Marie Kondo’s words, those that don’t “spark joy.”
Give it a touch of you
We don’t want messy desks and offices, but you can still make your work zone lively and creative by adding some touches of design or decorations that radiate your personality or the things you find inspiring. You can put up a corkboard with your memos and some of your most treasured pictures, or have a small succulent on your desk–whatever you think would make you smile when you’re tired with work.
Take short breaks
It’s never not okay to take a break. Allow yourself to pause and relax even for just 10 to 25 minutes in between your classes. You can also do some stretches or take a short walk to get some fresh air and avoid stiffness and aches.
Have a checklist of your tasks
There’s a different kind of satisfaction in ticking off the last item on your to-do list.
Creating a checklist does not only help you prioritise your tasks. It’d also allow you to manage your time better and feel less overwhelmed about what you have yet to do.
Celebrate small wins
Reward yourself for your small victories! Whether it’s hearing your most quiet student recite, getting a thank you note, or finishing your presentations early.
Recognising even your littlest achievements will surely lift your spirit and motivate you to work harder!
Take care of your mental health
There’s no point in being productive if you’re burnt out or too exhausted to do something the next day. Make sure that you get enough rest and keep your mental health in check.
Spend time with your loved ones, have short chats with your friends, play with your students, journal your thoughts and emotions. Do the things in which you can find joy amidst this situation.
Distant learning may have changed our routines and perhaps even our mindsets, but we’ll never run out of ways to cope and make the most of the situation. Little by little, try injecting these things into your daily life, and you’ll eventually find yourself becoming more productive and less stressed about work!
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