This is currently a very troubling time for everyone, with normal everyday life being completely turned upside down. It is however, a particularly worrying time for students who all of sudden have had to adapt to major life changes. Law students are already under immense pressure with copious amounts of work and deadlines each semester but now you also have to deal with an unprecedented lockdown that had shrouded your degree with uncertainty.
I am currently in my fourth year of my law degree and for me this year was supposed to be full of celebrations, instead, I have had to teach myself the last few weeks’ worth of my modules and I will be sitting my final exams remotely online, not being able to graduate with my fellow course mates for the foreseeable future. I am definitely not alone in this and whether you are studying at university or if you are an A-level law student, we are all in this together. I for one went through a period where I lost all motivation for my degree and found it really hard to focus on doing any work. After all, it is completely normal to lose motivation and productivity in these uncertain times (and it is okay to have days away from working) but hopefully these tips may help shift the focus back into getting that degree and getting the grade that you deserve!
1) Make lists - this may seem daunting as to start with the list will look too large to handle, but you will soon realise just how much work you already have done. Not only will this allow you to organise your work in a more streamline fashion, it will also make you aware of where you need to focus your attention, boosting productivity. It is also very satisfying and good for your mental health seeing all of your achievements of the day/week/month listed in one place. I even include my achievements of the previous semester to put the work left into perspective, you have already worked so hard and done so much that there is only just a little way to go now!
2) Set out a separate work environment - this is so important and is something that has made a massively positive impact to my work. During my A-levels and first years of university, I always used to do work in bed and then would struggle to wind down or I would find that I was constantly distracted. It was not until I set a desk up for myself that I realised that this was the issue. Set out a separate space which is different from your relaxation space. I know this may be hard as a lot of you will be back at your family home and with a lot of people off work and school, there may be added distractions but even if you can have the use of a table and chair for an hour a day, it will most definitely boost your productivity.
3) Make sure you make the most of your exercise - whether it is a run, walk, bike ride or even a 30-minute fitness workout video, this will be so beneficial to your mental health. Just having some fresh air and a change of scenery will really break up your day and add in a bit more structure. If you really hate the thought of exercise or cannot get out for a walk, for whatever reason, I really recommend meditation. This is particularly good if you are feeling anxious at the moment as it will allow you have some time focusing on your own mind. Whether you decide to exercise or meditate, having this little bit of time away will do you the world of good and will allow your work to become more timetabled, motivating you to achieve your goals for the day.
4) Have time away and days off - I often feel guilty for having a day off from doing work or revising but we definitely should not. This is probably the most valuable tip, do not be afraid to have a day (or even a few days) away from your computer or books. Your brain needs a rest too!! Having a few days away every now and again will give you enough time to rest and rejuvenate meaning that you will be more raring to go when you next sit down to do your work.
I hope these few tips enable you to work smarter and work better. This is a frightening time for everyone but we will get through this! Good luck for any university submissions, stay productive and stay safe.