It’s fair to say that 2020 has been far different than anyone could possible have guessed this time last year. After the whole country was plunged into lockdown for four months, we would be forgiven for thinking that things were finally getting back to normal. Pubs, restaurants, and shops – if not quite trading like before – are at least taking customers once again. People are jetting off on spontaneous – or delayed – holidays and many workers are back to work.
In addition, after a long period of continuing their studies away from campus or school, students have once again been returning to accommodation. However, the transition hasn’t always been as smooth as we might have hoped. Local lockdowns have meant that some students are once again being deprived of many typical student activities.
So, we decided to put together a list of top tips to help students cope with the possibility of another lockdown…
Try to maintain a routine
While student timetables are not famous for their accommodation of a solid routine, a lack of physical lectures and seminars to attend can only make this more difficult. However, maintaining some kind of routine is vital for our mental and physical wellbeing, as well as preserving a healthy sleep pattern.
Being unable to attend university classes isn’t the only deprivation that students are facing. A lack of jobs has meant that some students might also be missing out on the structure provided by part-time jobs. You can try to battle this by setting target times to both go to bed and get up in the morning. Allocating times for meals, study, and recreation is also a good way to keep some structure in your day.
Set yourself small goals
Being unable to head to the library or meet friends for a drink can make you feel like you have a lot of time with nothing to fill it with. Setting yourself small goals can help you to stay motivated. Look into learning some new recipes or getting back into an old hobby that you’re interested in (or get stuck into a new one!).
This is a great way to make you feel more productive and it can also help you to maintain a structure in your day. However, don’t make your goals too intimidating or put too much pressure on yourself. These should be fun, not stressful!
Try to stay active
By now, we all know how important exercise can be for our mental health. Many of us attempted a Joe Wickes workout or two when we found ourselves abruptly plunged into lockdown in March (before we realised, we were in it for the long haul…).
While this is great, experts recommend exercising outdoors if possible and at the brightest point of the day. This is because sunlight boosts our mood in addition to the endorphins that are released through exercise. Try going for a run or even some yoga in your local park. Alternatively, if you feel more comfortable exercising in private – that’s great too!