Friday, March 27th, 2020...3:49 pm

Social Distancing as a Graduate Student: 5 Things I’m Finding Helpful

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Hello Fellow Grad Students!

Today I had my second class with zoom since we all started doing physical/ social distancing.  It was a new experience, but I found that it brought a small sense of normalcy and routine back to my week that I had been missing.

It was also nice to hear how my classmates were doing among all the changes to our program and time in school. I am sure there are a lot of ways our academics are being affected, beyond not being in a classroom. I know many cannot go to their labs, and resources on campus are no longer open.

As we all adjust to the restrictions involved in this situation, I thought I would share a couple of tips that have been helpful for me.

1. Keeping one place at home to be my “study place”

This has been helping me to feel more “in the zone” when I sit down in this spot to do work. My brain knows that this is the space where I get work done (or try to!)

2. Putting my phone down and turning off the news for periods of time

It has been really nice to take breaks from the constant news on what is happening. I like staying up to date on things, but my mood and brain need a break every now and then to focus on something else.

3. Not putting pressure on myself to be super productive

from @blessthemessy on instagram

Reminding myself that not every second of every day is going to be uber productive just because I am spending more time at home!

4. Taking a moment to focus on something in front of me to help me feel more present 

I have been finding my mind is focused on the future, on all those uncertainties. It has helped me to feel calmer to choose something around me, or out the window, to focus on as a way to bring myself back to the present moment.

5. Looking for signs of spring 

Seeing little flowers blooming when I go for walks, or feeling the temperature getting a little warmer, or noticing green buds starting to grow on trees!

There is a lot of uncertainty swirling around and there is no right way to cope with all of that and the changes we have all been facing. I believe we can do it though, and I hope that despite all of this you have been able to find your own joy and ways to care for yourself.

Talk soon,


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