How did Corona save my time management?

Covid-19 is obviously the “hot potato” among the most highlighted topics globally due to its range, scale, and severity of impact. Without a doubt, the pandemic has caused numerous downside effects and disruption to everyone’s daily routine, regardless their nationality, status, and profession. Working remotely or working from home (WFH) is one of the noticeable effects caused by Covid-19 and it is triggering a controversial discussion on whether if this is an efficient working method. Personally speaking, after more than two months of working intensively from my “home office”, I have definitely seen both the pretty and ugly faces of this practice.

The pretty thing that can firstly be spotted from WFH is definitely the travel time cut-down.

During this time, I don’t need to get up super early to get ready for school or work. Especially, it saves me more than 1,5 hours per day commuting back and forth between my apartment and Hanken, which is a very big deal.

Plus, I received an offer to a part-time consulting project and a full-time summer traineeship at UPM. In the normal case, I must decide which one should I let go and which to stick around. However, under the circumstance of Covid-19, I only need to wisely divide my time schedule so that the work-study-life balance combo will be maintained. Eventually, I can also work double jobs and study at the same time without having to drop anything even though the workload is super crazy for me.  

On the ugly side of things, concentration is undoubtedly the ultimate enemy of WFH. Although I have an awfully load of work burdening my shoulders, it is quite challenging for me to keep my head on the ground and focus on my work. Distraction comes from all directions such as social media, Youtube, online shopping, bed (obviously) and whatever you name it which seriously undermine my productivity and efficiency. Longer working days is inevitably as the result of the two untamed beasts named “Distraction” and “Bad time management”. Furthermore, without any face-to-face communication and interaction, it became a nightmare to seek for help in case of emergency, regardless the nature of the problem (whether if it’s work or study-related).

So, learning from both good and bad experiences mentioned above, I would like to share with you some pro-tips that I’ve found particularly and (partially) helpful for me to stay positive and effective during this period:

1. Train your thoughts

As Eckhard Tolle simply put it: “The primary cause of happiness is never the situation, but your thoughts about it. Be aware of the thoughts you are thinking”. Try to focus your thoughts and energy on the brighter side of any events that occurred throughout the day.

2. Set up a feasible and reasonable working timetable with mini goals along the day.

This might sound like an absurdly obvious and non-special method, but I bet not many people do it anyway. Nevertheless, it’s absolutely crucial. Even if you won’t be able to cross every goal that you’ve set earlier off your to-do list and follow your timetable in a strict manner. But at least, at the end of the day, you’ll realize what you’ve missed and need to be done in the following day and more importantly, how did you let that goal slip. A small self-reflection will naturally occur as a side effect of this activity, which is super good sign for incremental self-improvement.

3. Take a look at applications that can assist your working and boost up your brain activity level

Try, for example,

– Pomodoro app that enhances your concentration by setting up reasonable work-break interval (25 minutes of working will be rewarded by 5 minutes of break; after 4 mini-breaks you’ll get a long 15 minutes break). Believe me or not, this mechanism is incredibly helpful for your productivity and working efficiency.

– Brain boost applications that keep your brain going and trained throughout the day with quick, mini-puzzles such as Elevate, Peak, or Math Riddle (this one is a bit heavy on Math problems if you’re into it like me).

– Listen to concentration, deep focus music to get your mind focused on the task you’re executing.

4. Set up a “Love yourself” including:

  • Eat healthy, always prepare healthy snacks,
  • Intake sufficient amount of multi vitamins, minerals and other essential nutrients,
  • drink enough water,
  • do more exercise, go outside for at least half an hour per day, and
  • interact with your beloved ones more often.

I hope that this blog will be relatable to you in some ways and be useful for your WFH routine. Now, enjoy the lovely sunny summer. A truly “thank you” for having spent time on this little blog post of mine 😀