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The online world

It is a strange time we are living in now, with the world being struck by a global pandemic and everything coming to a halt.

A lot of things have changed in the past month and I am currently writing this back in my home country, Singapore. The University of Manchester has cancelled all classes and moved everything online, so we now have to adapt to studying and working on our assignments remotely. It is indeed a very challenging time as we have to utilise different online platforms to facilitate our learning. For instance, my course mates and I have been using Zoom and Skype to stay connected and my project group has used GoToMeeting to complete our group presentation. It is also very important to check emails regularly to be updated about possible online meetings that supervisors and lecturers may arrange.

Although there is a slight convenience in being able to do everything from home, gradually you become less motivated to work because it is a comfortable and familiar environment, so it is tempting to procrastinate. Therefore, it is crucial to set up a study space away from your bed so that you are conditioned to only rest in one area and do work in the curated study space. It might also be helpful to move to a new study space when you start to get lethargic in the same spot. Personally, I like to keep my phone on ‘do not disturb’ mode so that I will not be distracted by the notifications that pop up.

Most of us have been in isolation for about a month now, and that can take a huge toll on our mental wellbeing. After all, humans are social creatures and we crave company. My favourite parts of the day are when I get to FaceTime my friends – so be sure to set up catch up sessions to share about one another’s lives or just simply to do a workout together. Aside from being on top of schoolwork, it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle, such as sticking to a regular sleep schedule, do activities that are uplifting, and eat a balanced diet. Hoping that everyone stays safe and stays sane!

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