How I Stay Motivated During Self-Isolation

05 May 2020

Written by International Student Ambassador ShuHui Yong

Over the course of a few weeks, I’m guessing you, like me, went from having a schedule packed with lectures, tutorials, volunteering, work, sports and fun activities with friends, to having no schedule at all as the country strongly recommends self-isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

I admit I felt quite lost for the first few days, but I have since managed to overcome this obstacle and have adjusted my lifestyle to accommodate this new norm. In this blog, let me share my daily routine with you.

I start off each day the same by waking up at my usual time. It is natural to try to sneak in a few more hours of sleep in the morning, especially if you have nothing on for the day, but getting out of bed early is a good start and helps set the mood for the day. Then, I get dressed like usual, make my bed and have breakfast. These small things are important to me, so keeping them in my routine puts me in a great mood for the rest of the day.

After breakfast, I take time to organise my schedule for the day. After all, you have total control over what you will be doing for the day, right? I tend to write out a daily schedule for each day of the week in my planner on Sundays and, as needed, alter my schedule slightly every morning. If you haven’t done that already, I suggest you give it a go as it really helps you keep on track of your schedule. With these daily ‘goals’ in mind, I get to work, but I take a break every half an hour or so to give my mind a break.

On some days, I don’t have much work to do. Instead, I spend my time in another way. I started writing about my experiences, capturing and recording my thoughts and emotions in words. I take my yoga mat out and do some exercise in the afternoons. I text or call friends that I have not heard from for a long time. Oh, and I try to go to bed at a regular time --- don’t ever mess up your sleep pattern!

Although this new way of life is indeed a far cry from my carefully structured life before, I have taken this challenge as an opportunity to put my self-discipline and time management skills to the test. In the process, I have realised the things that drive and motivate me to help me stay on top of things and, in the end, I am just trying to live each day as meaningfully as I can.

As Zig Ziglar's famous quote goes, it is your attitude, not your aptitude, that will determine your altitude.

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