Student using smartphone in bed

May 7, 2020, by stykjsk

What we can do if every day is becoming a pyjama day

By Katy Skillen, MNutr Nutrition and Dietetics student blogger

Our working environment has shifted drastically in the past few weeks. Most of us have had to switch from studying in the cosiness of our student rooms, or intensive environment of the libraries, to sharing a cluttered kitchen table with the rest of your family. No books, no study buddies, and no endless lattes from the library’s Starbucks.

But working from home is a growing trend, and with so much uncertainty surrounding the next few months, it is likely to get even more popular. So, I’ve rounded up some tips to help you with home-working, whether this is for exams or for a job, to keep you motivated and engaged.

Get a routine

While it’s very important to be flexible right now, I find that having a rough idea of your daily routine gives structure to the day. Try setting an alarm to make sure you don’t sleep past a certain time every day and discipline yourself to a normal enough bedtime. This will make you so much more productive.

Get dressed

This may seem very small, but I really value taking the time to get dressed in the morning. It helps kick-start my mind into work mode!

Keep moving

It’s easy to stay on the same sofa (or bed) all day but breaking up periods of work with some activity such as a short walk, or some at home workouts will help keep you fit and focused. I’ve been taking part in free workouts run by the University’s sport department. You can find out more about how to look after your health and wellbeing at home. They even host weekly fitness challenges so you can keep pushing yourself!

Create a study space

As tempting as it may be, staying in bed to do work will just mix up where you work and relax in your brain, so you won’t ever be able to fully focus or fully switch off when the working day ends. Instead, I have a designated workstation which is free from distractions and I can fully get my head down.

Set targets

Setting an achievable to-do list will help you finish the day feeling accomplished. But also include other things on your goals. I include things like household chores, phoning my friends, and cooking. Also, remember to schedule in breaks to just do nothing!

Have down time

Sustain motivation by having a reward planned for the end of two to three hours of hard work. I always try to stop any work at 5pm and I take weekends off to enjoy family time and do little things that I enjoy.

Use the tools available

Yes, we may be missing out on books and other resources, but there are great online systems that we can make use of. From being able to listen to lectures on Echo 360 and share files on Outlook, it’s never been easier to stay connected while at home. The Careers team are offering careers appointments online through Microsoft Teams, Skype or by phone. You can book an appointment on MyCareer or you can also find support and advice on the website to keep your career plans ticking over.

Eat well

How many times have you sat with a packet of biscuits beside you while in front of your laptop, only to discover in a few hours that all that remains are a few crumbs, and you realise that you subconsciously managed to gradually devour a whole box of chocolate fingers? (Answer: too many times). Plan healthy, nourishing meals, and schedule in time to move away from your work to make some healthy snacks throughout the day. But of course, endless cups of tea are a non-negotiable aspect of working from home for anyone.

Posted in Student Bloggers