New ways to stay focused

There’s no denying that the world feels like a really bizarre place right now. I for one am coming to terms with the fact that I am now studying German out of a textbook, rather than on my year abroad in Germany. Adjusting to being back at home so abruptly has been strange, and a lot of other students I’ve chatted too are finding it tricky to remain focused on essays and revision too.

With this in mind, I’ve decided to compile a list of 4 things that I’ve been trying to do in order to retain a bit of structure throughout the day. This has helped me stay focused when I want to be and unwind when I need to. After all, those dissertations aren’t going to write themselves…

Commute to your desk

Most of us are used to a decent walk onto campus and thanks to the abundance of hills in Sheffield, this no doubt gets the heart rate pumping every morning. In comparison, the idea of rolling out of bed and slumping straight into a desk chair is far from inspiring. Fitting in some exercise in place of this lost commute will help wake up the body and mind in preparation for studying. Personally, I am attending a virtual pilates class where I can follow the instructor from my living room. A lot of instructors have moved online and some are offering classes for free during this period.

Video call study sessions

Why not bring the IC to you? Lot’s of students prefer to study amongst others and thanks to technology we can still do this on a virtual level. By video calling a friend, propping the phone up and getting on with some work, you’ll feel less alone and more motivated. Arranging a time each day to do so makes sticking to a study schedule easier. You’re also less likely to get distracted by your phone.

Streamlining social media consumption

We’re subject to an awful lot of ever-changing information at the moment and though it is important to stay informed, what was once daily posts from followers and friends can now feel like a constant reminder of the current situation. I’ve been setting a timers on these apps, moving them to a different screen on my phone, and sometime’s I’ve even temporarily signed out of the accounts. This has helped me to only use them when I really want to.

Learn something new

Now is the perfect time to watch, read or start a new hobby. I’ve just started Ku’damm 56, a German series that is available for free on YouTube – perfect for other languages students too. Equally, if you would like to learn something completely new, have a look here at the Open University free courses. There is everything and anything from the French Revolution to understanding emotional intelligence.

I hope these ideas are helpful and if anything, that this post offers a bit of light reading in the midst of everything that is happening in the world right now. Stay safe and stay focused, everyone!

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