No one could deny that the pandemic has rocked the foundations of how we operate on a day-to-day basis. This is especially true for students who are nowdistance learning for the first time. Working exclusively online, coping with lifestyle changes, and a lack of usual communication opportunities – all these factors and more have made life more challenging for students.
You may find yourself feeling more depressed than usual. The undue stress and changes could lead to feelings of anxiety, boredom, anger, and apathy. These can quickly become overwhelming if you’ve not had to deal with them before. Keep reading to learn about the recommended coping strategies from psychologists to help support your mental wellbeing.
Take time to rest
A lot of people feel like quarantine is the perfect time to pick up new hobbies and lifestyle changes. They may be spending more time than ever doing homework or adding extra classes to their course load. It’s okay if that feels like too much for you to do. While learning hobbies can help pass the time, you’re not obligated to work – or overwork – yourself on non-critical tasks.
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This includes taking time to separate your study and personal life to give both the attention they deserve. Studying around the clock can lead to emotional disbalance and depression. It is important not to forget to rest because excessive learning isn’t always a good idea. Consider unburdening yourself and using supportive materials.
Maintain a routine
When everything feels off kilter, it’s important to hold onto the stability that you can. One of the easiest ways to fend off depression while distance learning is to maintain as much of your routine as you can. The days can certainly blend together if you’re working in every corner of your house and rotating the same three pairs of sweatpants.
If you didn’t enjoy your previous school schedule, then consider setting a new one. Plan to wake up and put on the clothes you’d typically wear to class from 10 to 4, or whenever you’d usually be on campus. Your pajamas and sweats will still be there. Eat regular meals and, if possible, contain your schoolwork to one area of the house.
Stay in touch with friends
Even though you might not have the same contact with your teacher and classmates, that doesn’t mean you have to be alone. Technology has given us more ways to connect distantly than ever before. When it comes to schoolwork, consider reaching out to your teacher to develop a more social group for the class. If there isn’t a chat function or community board on your school program, you aren’t out of options.
Discord and Google both have great options to set up community discussion channels. You can even stream video and voice to help communicate better. This is a great way to organize study parties, groups, and distance tutoring sessions. These ideas can also help you stay in touch with your friends outside of school. Eating a meal together or hosting a movie night virtually may not be ideal, but it can still help 1you continue to socialize and connect, which is a great boost for your mental health.
Remain focused on your goals
When it all gets too much, there’s one thing you can do: focus on your goals. We don’t know when the pandemic will end and quarantine will lift. But it will happen. There will be a day when you can return to class and life in a way that allows us to take care of ourselves with ease.
Until that time, it’s important to simply stay focused on why you’re pursuing an education and take everything day by day. Whether you’re a student taking a graduate class or in high school, you aren’t alone in your struggle. Make sure to keep up a routine, rest, and keep in touch with classmates and friends. Your mental health will thank you for it.
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