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6 Ways to Stay Productive at Home During Quarantine

The Coronavirus has been going on for months now, and I think we can all agree we have struggled to find ways to spend our time inside in the midst of it all. Oftentimes days can merge together, and it can be difficult to stay on-track at home.

Here are the tools that help to stay goal-oriented during Covid-19 recommended by our Assistant Director Sam Palmer-Shields, starting with:

Positive headspace – When trying to get stuff done, you must begin with the prep to ensure the most favorable outcome. This means setting the tone for your energy, mental, and environment. Find that if I start by the night before preparing myself for a productive day by having positive talks it helps.

Tip – Make sure you keep encouraging things around you to remind yourself of the energy or mindset you want to have.

Good Music I subscribe to Spotify, it has a feature that allows you to listen to playlists based on your mood. When I want to be productive but have sounds to keep me focused I listen to the “Jazz Vibes” playlist. Some other great mood playlists to listen to are classical, deep focus, your favorite coffee house, and good vibes. Remember music can help regulate our mood towards our tasks so be sure to choose wisely!

Tip – Another way to get the full effect of this is to play it in your headphones, creating a sound barrier to you and other unpredictable noises.

Sketch Pad – I started using a sketch pad to write down my notes, thoughts, and doodles. It is essentially a blank canvas that doesn’t force me to fit my thoughts into a grammatically correct sentence. I find that this option has allowed me to switch from writing bullet points to sentences then drawings. The freedom may seem silly, but each page is now unique because I never know how it’s going to start or end!

Tip – To add more personality you can add stickers, highlighters, or markers. Adding a pop of color helps to keep things visually interesting.

Large workspace – I have tried to work on the folding dinner table and it created a barrier that I didn’t even know existed. It limited me to only have my laptop and maybe a small notepad and pen. I recently switched to the kitchen table, which allowed me to spread out. This gave me the option to go from working on my laptop to reading my book or completing my calendar. Having all of my to do’s at my fingertips kept me on a role.

Tip – The goal is to have things in front of you in order to see it and get to it. So try to lay everything out prior to working to limit yourself from having to avoid getting up.

Keep it clean – It will be easy when you are working on a project to just leave things there till the next day. But you may find that now that it has a “spot” it doesn’t move. I pack up my work every day due to using places that are really not intended for my work. I also place my work in a space that is not it’s home. This forces me to not only look at it daily but move it to my new workspace for the day.

Tip – Pack light! Make sure the things you’re moving are easy to move to ensure they don’t become a mental barrier because of all the extra work it takes to move it.

Short to-do list – Having a to-do list is great, it helps you keep things organized and in mind. But as the list gets longer and unattainable you become unmotivated. Seeing an endless list creates anxiety, so listing only the top things helps with expectations. It is key to identify what you are able to get done in a day or so to keep checking off and creating progress.

Tip – Don’t mix your lists! Try to keep your home, work, and personal tasks separate.